Code Understanding

Dr. Andrew Broad
Computer Science
Code Understanding

Code understanding is the enterprise of extracting higher-level knowledge from code written in formal languages. It tends to be applied to program code (although there are other kinds of code than programs), and goes by such names as program understanding, program comprehension and reverse engineering.

The cliché-based approach to code understanding extracts clichés from code-fragments, which are data-structures explaining the semantics or purpose of each code-fragment. These clichés can be combined with other clichés to form higher-level clichés, building up a tree of clichés whose leaves dip into the code, and whose root is the overall goal of the program (there may be a forest of disconnected trees if it is not possible to extract one overall goal).

External links

  • CSMR 98
  • Linda Wills
  • Malcolm Munro
  • Scott Tilley
  • Program Understanding at CASCON'94
  • Rigi
  • Georgia Tech's Reverse Engineering Group

  • Email me
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