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Contribution Details

Type Conference or Workshop Paper
Scope Discipline-based scholarship
Published in Proceedings No
Title Classifying Change Types for Qualifying Change Couplings
Organization Unit
  • Beat Fluri
  • Harald Gall
Item Subtype Original Work
Refereed Yes
Status Published in final form
Page Range 35 - 45
Event Title Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Program Comprehension
Publisher IEEE Computer Society
Abstract Text Current change history analysis approaches rely on information provided by versioning systems such as CVS. Therefore, changes are not related to particular source code entities such as classes or methods but rather to text lines added and/or removed. For analyzing whether some change coupling between source code entities is significant or only minor textual adjustments have been checked in, it is essential to reflect the changes to the source code entities. We have developed an approach for analyzing and classifying change types based on code revisions. We can differentiate between several types of changes on the method or class level and assess their significance in terms of the impact of the change types on other source code entities and whether a change may be functionality-modifying or functionality-preserving. We applied our change taxonomy to a case study and found out that in many cases large numbers of lines added and/or deleted are not accompanied by significant changes but small textual adaptations (such as indentation, etc.). Furthermore, our approach allows us to relate all change couplings to the significance of the identified change types. As a result, change couplings between code entities can be qualified and less relevant couplings can be filtered out.
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