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A useful approach to developing reverse engineering metrics

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4 Author(s)
Zhou, S. ; De Montfort Univ., Leicester, UK ; Yang, H. ; Luker, P. ; Xudong He

If software metrics are useful in a forward software engineering environment, they are vital in a reverse engineering environment. We are endeavouring to discover approaches to developing reverse engineering metrics for software engineers who need them for reverse engineering legacy systems. The major contribution of the paper is the presentation of a systematic research base and a hierarchical approach to the development of software metrics for reverse engineering. Measurement is fundamental to the software engineering discipline as a whole. A software metric is a quantitative measure of the degree to which a system, component, or process possesses a given attribute (N.E. Fenton and S.L. Pfleeger, 1996). Software reverse engineering is the process of analysing a subject system to: identify the system's components and their interrelationships; and create representations of the system at a higher level of abstraction (E.J. Chikofsky and J.H. Cross II, 1990). The goal of developing reverse engineering metrics is to identify measures that are needed for assessing the status of reverse engineering projects, products, processes and resources, and helping engineers to understand both what is happening and what will happen during reverse engineering procedures. Consequently, these concrete reverse engineering measures make more visible to us aspects of process and product in reverse engineering, in particular, the product of specifications and the process of abstractions and transformations. This makes it possible to control reverse engineering projects. Aspects of measurement in reverse engineering are outlined

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Computer Software and Applications Conference, 1999. COMPSAC '99. Proceedings. The Twenty-Third Annual International

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