Polymetric Views---A Lightweight Visual Approach to Reverse Engineering

Lanza, Michele; Ducasse, Stéphane (2003). Polymetric Views---A Lightweight Visual Approach to Reverse Engineering. Transactions on Software Engineering, 29(9), pp. 782-795. IEEE Computer Society 10.1109/TSE.2003.1232284

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Reverse engineering software systems has become a major concern in software industry because of their sheer size and complexity. This problem needs to be tackled, since the systems in question are of considerable worth to their owners an d maintainers. In this article we present the concept of a polymetric view, a lightweight software visualization technique enriched with software metrics information. Polymetric views help to understand the structure and detect problems of a software syst em in the initial phases of a reverse engineering process. We discuss the benefits and limits of several predefined polymetric views we have implemented in our tool CodeCrawler. Moreover, based on clusters of different polymetric views we have developed a methodology which supports and guides a software engineer in the first phases of a reverse engineering of a large software system. We have refined this methodology by repeatedly applying it on industrial systems, and illustrate it by applying a selection of polymetric views to a case study.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Computer Science (INF)
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Computer Science (INF) > Software Composition Group (SCG)

UniBE Contributor:

Ducasse, Stephane


000 Computer science, knowledge & systems
500 Science > 510 Mathematics




IEEE Computer Society




Manuela Bamert

Date Deposited:

22 Nov 2017 14:26

Last Modified:

23 Oct 2019 05:25

Publisher DOI:






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