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A new approach to version control

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2 Author(s)
J. Plaice ; Dept. d'Inf., Laval Univ., Que., Canada ; W. W. Wadge

A method for controlling versions of software and other hierarchically structured entities is presented. Using the variant structure principle, a particular version of an entire system is formed by combining the most relevant existing versions of the various components of the system. An algebraic version language that allows histories (numbered series), subversions (or variants), and joins is described. It is shown that the join operation is simply the lattice least upper bound and together with the variant structure principle, provides a systematic framework for recombining divergent variants. The utility of this approach is demonstrated using LEMUR, a programming environment for modular C programs, which was developed using itself. The ways in which this notion of versions is related to the possible world semantics of intensional logic are discussed

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 3 )