Specifying Coherent Refactoring Software Artefacts with Distributed Graph Transformations

Specifying Coherent Refactoring Software Artefacts with Distributed Graph Transformations

Paolo Bottoni (University of Rome "La Sapienza", Italy), Francesco Parisi-Presicce (George Mason University, USA) and Gabriele Taentzer (Technical University of Berlin, Germany)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-527-6.ch005
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Abstract

This chapter discusses the use of Graph Transformations for refactoring. Refactoring changes the internal structure of a software system, while preserving its behavior. Even though the input/output view of a system’s behavior does not change, refactoring can have several consequences for the computing process, as expressed for instance by the sequence of method calls or by state changes of an object or an activity. Such modifications must be reflected in the system model, generally expressed through UML diagrams. We propose a formal approach, based on distributed graph transformation, to the coordinated evolution of code and model, as effect of refactorings. The approach can be integrated into existing refactoring tools. Due to its formal background, it makes it possible to reason about the behavior preservation of each specified refactoring.

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