Tracing Domain Data Concepts in Layered Applications
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A goal of reusing source code is to lower development cost; however, reuse techniques usually require additional costs in creating generic source code and retrieving the appropriate source code from a code repository. This Master thesis presents a novel traceability technique that facilitates reuse in layered applications in a cost-effective way, called Domain Data Concept (DDC) Tracer. While current traceability techniques focus on establishing links between software artifacts, DDC Tracer is focused on tracing concepts between software and data, across different layers of an application, and across heterogeneous implementation files. The DDC Tracer has been evaluated using various techniques: industry case studies from Aramco, an experiment comparing DDC Tracer tool with related techniques, a user study with industry software engineers, and a feature comparison. The results of this Master's thesis indicate that the DDC Tracer is a lightweight alternative to source code reuse techniques, is feasible to use in practice, and is more effective than existing information retrieval (IR) tools in locating related source code for a given set of DDCs that implement a specific feature in a software system.