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Pirkelbauer, Peter Mathias
2010 December 1900
Programmers rely on programming idioms, design patterns, and workaround techniques to express fundamental design not directly supported by the language. Evolving languages often address frequently encountered problems by adding language and library support to subsequent releases. By using new features, programmers can express their intent more directly. As new concerns, such as parallelism or security, arise, early idioms and language facilities can become serious liabilities. Modern code sometimes bene fits from optimization techniques not feasible for code that uses less expressive constructs. Manual source code migration is expensive, time-consuming, and prone to errors. This dissertation discusses the introduction of new language features and libraries, exemplifi ed by open-methods and a non-blocking growable array library. We describe the relationship of open-methods to various alternative implementation techniques. The benefi ts of open-methods materialize in simpler code, better performance, and similar memory footprint when compared to using alternative implementation techniques. Based on these findings, we develop the notion of source code rejuvenation, the automated migration of legacy code. Source code rejuvenation leverages enhanced program language and library facilities by finding and replacing coding patterns that can be expressed through higher-level software abstractions. Raising the level of abstraction improves code quality by lowering software entropy. In conjunction with extensions to programming languages, source code rejuvenation o ers an evolutionary trajectory towards more reliable, more secure, and better performing code. We describe the tools that allow us efficient implementations of code rejuvenations. The Pivot source-to-source translation infrastructure and its traversal mechanism forms the core of our machinery. In order to free programmers from representation details, we use a light-weight pattern matching generator that turns a C like input language into pattern matching code. The generated code integrates seamlessly with the rest of the analysis framework. We utilize the framework to build analysis systems that find common workaround techniques for designated language extensions of C 0x (e.g., initializer lists). Moreover, we describe a novel system (TACE | template analysis and concept extraction) for the analysis of uninstantiated template code. Our tool automatically extracts requirements from the body of template functions. TACE helps programmers understand the requirements that their code de facto imposes on arguments and compare those de facto requirements to formal and informal specifications.
Manilov, Stanislav Zapryanov
Hardware evolves faster than software. While a hardware system might need replacement every one to five years, the average lifespan of a software system is a decade, with some instances living up to several decades. Inevitably, code outlives the platform it was developed for and may become legacy: development of the software stops, but maintenance has to continue to keep up with the evolving ecosystem. No new features are added, but the software is still used to fulfil its original purpose. Even in the cases where it is still functional (which discourages its replacement), legacy code is inefficient, costly to maintain, and a risk to security. This thesis proposes methods to leverage the expertise put in the development of legacy code and to extend its useful lifespan, rather than to throw it away. A novel methodology is proposed, for automatically exploiting platform specific optimisations when retargeting a program to another platform. The key idea is to leverage the optimisation information embedded in vector processing intrinsic functions. The performance of the resulting code is shown to be close to the performance of manually retargeted programs, however with the human labour removed. Building on top of that, the question of discovering optimisation information when there are no hints in the form of intrinsics or annotations is investigated. This thesis postulates that such information can potentially be extracted from profiling the data flow during executions of the program. A context-aware data dependence profiling system is described, detailing previously overlooked aspects in related research. The system is shown to be essential in surpassing the information that can be inferred statically, in particular about loop iterators. Loop iterators are the controlling part of a loop. This thesis describes and evaluates a system for extracting the loop iterators in a program. It is found to significantly outperform previously known techniques and further increases the amount of information about the structure of a program that is available to a compiler. Combining this system with data dependence profiling improves its results even more. Loop iterator recognition enables other code modernising techniques, like source code rejuvenation and commutativity analysis. The former increases the use of idiomatic code and as a result increases the maintainability of the program. The latter can potentially drive parallelisation and thus dramatically improve runtime performance.
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