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Most current software systems contain undocumented high-level ideas implemented across multiple files and modules. When developers perform program maintenance tasks, they often waste time and effort locating and understanding these scattered concerns. We have developed a semi-automated concern location and comprehension tool, Find-Concept, designed to(More)
OOP style requires programmers to organize their code according to objects (or nouns, using natural language as a metaphor), causing a program's actions (verbs) to become scattered during implementation. We define an <i>Action-Oriented Identifier Graph</i> (AOIG) to reconnect the scattered actions in an OOP system. An OOP system with an AOIG will(More)
The large time and effort devoted to software maintenance can be reduced by providing software engineers with software tools that automate tedious, error-prone tasks. However, despite the prevalence of tools such as IDEs, which automatically provide program information and automated support to the developer, there is considerable room for improvement in the(More)
Developers heavily rely on Local Code Search (LCS)---the execution of a text-based search on a single code base---to find starting points in software maintenance tasks. While LCS approaches commonly used by developers are based on lexical matching and often result in failed searches or irrelevant results, developers have not yet migrated to the various(More)
Significant portions of software life cycle resources are devoted to program maintenance, which motivates the development of automated techniques and tools to support the tedious, error-prone tasks. Natural language clues from programmers' naming in literals, identifiers, and comments can be leveraged to improve the effectiveness of many software tools. For(More)
Researchers have developed ways to describe a concern, to store a concern, and even to keep a concern's code quickly available while updating it. Work on identifying concerns (semi-)automatically, however, has yet to gain attention and practical use, even though it is a desirable prerequisite to all of the above activities, particularly for legacy(More)
To realize the benefits of Aspect Oriented Programming (AOP), developers must refactor active and legacy code bases into an AOP language. When refactoring, developers first need to identify refactoring candidates, a process called <i>aspect mining</i>. Humans perform mining by using a variety of clues to determine which code to refactor. However, existing(More)
Software maintainers often use reverse engineering tools to aid in the extremely difficult task of understanding unfamiliar code, especially within large, complex software systems. While traditional program analysis can provide detailed information for reverse engineering, often this information is not sufficient to assist the user with high-level program(More)
This research group presentation focuses on our work in extracting and utilizing natural language clues from source code to improve software maintenance tools. We demonstrate the valuable information that can be gained from a software system's identifiers, literals, and comments. We then present an overview of our extraction process, program representation,(More)
To complete a change task, software developers spend a substantial amount of time navigating code to understand the relevant parts. During this investigation phase, they implicitly build context models of the elements and relations that are relevant to the task. Through an exploratory study with twelve developers completing change tasks in three open source(More)