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Received: 2003-06-26

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Journal of Zhejiang University SCIENCE A 2004 Vol.5 No.11 P.1374-1381


MFV-Class: a multi-faceted visualization tool of object classes

Author(s):  ZHANG Zhi-meng, PAN Yun-he, ZHUANG Yue-ting

Affiliation(s):  Institute of Artificial Intelligence, College of Computer Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310027, China

Corresponding email(s):   zzmeng@sina.com

Key Words:  Program comprehension, Reverse engineering, Software visualization, Object-oriented software metrics, Program analysis

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ZHANG Zhi-meng, PAN Yun-he, ZHUANG Yue-ting. MFV-Class: a multi-faceted visualization tool of object classes[J]. Journal of Zhejiang University Science A, 2004, 5(11): 1374-1381.

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Classes are key software components in an object-oriented software system. In many industrial OO software systems, there are some classes that have complicated structure and relationships. So in the processes of software maintenance, testing, software reengineering, software reuse and software restructure, it is a challenge for software engineers to understand these classes thoroughly. This paper proposes a class comprehension model based on constructivist learning theory, and implements a software visualization tool (MFV-Class) to help in the comprehension of a class. The tool provides multiple views of class to uncover manifold facets of class contents. It enables visualizing three object-oriented metrics of classes to help users focus on the understanding process. A case study was conducted to evaluate our approach and the toolkit.

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