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Title: Component-based software engineering: a quantitative approach
Author: Goulão, Miguel Carlos Pacheco Afonso
Advisor: Abreu, Fernando
Defense Date: 2008
Publisher: FCT - UNL
Abstract: Background: Often, claims in Component-Based Development (CBD) are only supported by qualitative expert opinion, rather than by quantitative data. This contrasts with the normal practice in other sciences, where a sound experimental validation of claims is standard practice. Experimental Software Engineering (ESE) aims to bridge this gap. Unfortunately, it is common to find experimental validation efforts that are hard to replicate and compare, to build up the body of knowledge in CBD. Objectives: In this dissertation our goals are (i) to contribute to evolution of ESE, in what concerns the replicability and comparability of experimental work, and (ii) to apply our proposals to CBD, thus contributing to its deeper and sounder understanding. Techniques: We propose a process model for ESE, aligned with current experimental best practices, and combine this model with a measurement technique called Ontology-Driven Measurement (ODM). ODM is aimed at improving the state of practice in metrics definition and collection, by making metrics definitions formal and executable,without sacrificing their usability. ODM uses standard technologies that can be well adapted to current integrated development environments. Results: Our contributions include the definition and preliminary validation of a process model for ESE and the proposal of ODM for supporting metrics definition and collection in the context of CBD. We use both the process model and ODM to perform a series experimental works in CBD, including the cross-validation of a component metrics set for JavaBeans, a case study on the influence of practitioners expertise in a sub-process of component development (component code inspections), and an observational study on reusability patterns of pluggable components (Eclipse plug-ins). These experimental works implied proposing, adapting, or selecting adequate ontologies, as well as the formal definition of metrics upon each of those ontologies. Limitations: Although our experimental work covers a variety of component models and, orthogonally, both process and product, the plethora of opportunities for using our quantitative approach to CBD is far from exhausted. Conclusions: The main contribution of this dissertation is the illustration, through practical examples, of how we can combine our experimental process model with ODM to support the experimental validation of claims in the context of CBD, in a repeatable and comparable way. In addition, the techniques proposed in this dissertation are generic and can be applied to other software development paradigms.
Description: Dissertação apresentada para a obtenção do Grau de Doutor em Informática pela Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia
Appears in Collections:FCT: DI - Teses de Doutoramento

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