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Tree-oriented vs. line-oriented Observation-Based Slicing

Binkley, D; Gold, NE; Islam, S; Krinke, J; Yoo, S; (2017) Tree-oriented vs. line-oriented Observation-Based Slicing. In: Proceedings of the 2017 IEEE 17th International Working Conference on Source Code Analysis and Manipulation (SCAM). (pp. pp. 21-30). IEEE: Shanghai, China. Green open access

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Abstract

Observation-based slicing is a recently-introduced, language-independent slicing technique based on the dependencies observable from program behavior. The original algorithm processed traditional source code at the line-of-text level. A recent variation was developed to slice the tree-based XML representation of executable models. We ported the model slicer to source code using srcML to construct a tree-based representation of traditional source code. We present the results of a comparison of the two slicers using four experiments involving seventeen different programs, including classic benchmarks and larger production systems. The resulting slices had essentially the same size and quite often the same content. Where they differ, the use of tree structure traded an ability to remove unnecessary parts of a statement for the requirement of maintaining aspect of the code structure. Comparing the slicers finds that each has its advantages. For example, when the tree representation facilitates the deletion of large chunks of code, the tree slicer was over eight times faster. In contrast, when slicing C++ code it was over nine times slower because of the multitude of small trees created to support C++ syntax. Given the pros and cons of the two, the results suggest the value of their hybrid combination.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Tree-oriented vs. line-oriented Observation-Based Slicing
Event: 2017 IEEE 17th International Working Conference on Source Code Analysis and Manipulation (SCAM)
Location: Shanghai, China
Dates: 17 September 2017 - 18 September 2017
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1109/SCAM.2017.11
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1109/SCAM.2017.11
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: XML, Trajectory, Software packages, Heuristic algorithms, C++ languages, Software algorithms, Slicing, ORBS, SrcML, Observational Slicing
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Computer Science
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1570268
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