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Quantifying Design Principles in Reusable Software Components

Software reuse can occur in various places during the software development cycle. Reuse of existing source code is the most commonly practiced form of software reuse. One of the key requirements for software reuse is readability, thus the interest in the use of data abstraction, inheritance, modularity, and aspects of the visible portion of module specifications. This research analyzed the contents of software reuse libraries to answer the basic question of what makes a good reusable software component. The approach taken was to measure and analyze various software metrics as mapped to design characteristics. A related research question investigated the change in the design principles over time. This was measured by comparing sets of Ada reuse libraries categorized into two time periods. It was discovered that recently developed Ada reuse components scored better on readability than earlier developed components. A benefit of this research has been the development of a set of "design for reuse" guidelines. These guidelines address coding practices as well as design principles for an Ada implementation. C++ software reuse libraries were also analyzed to determine if design principles can be applied in a language independent fashion. This research used cyclomatic complexity metrics, software science metrics, and traditional static code metrics to measure design features. This research provides at least three original contributions. First it collects empirical data about existing reuse libraries. Second, it develops a readability measure for software libraries which can aid in comparing libraries. And third, this research developed a set of coding and design guidelines for developers of reusable software. Future research can investigate how design principles for C++ change over time. Another topic for research is the investigation of systems employing reused components to determine which libraries are more successfully used than others.
Date12 1900
CreatorsMoore, Freeman Leroy
ContributorsStansifer, Ryan D., Jacob, Roy Thomas, Brazile, Robert Pershing, 1941-, Becker, Jack D.
PublisherUniversity of North Texas
Source SetsUniversity of North Texas
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeThesis or Dissertation
Formatviii, 218 leaves : ill., Text
RightsPublic, Copyright, Copyright is held by the author, unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved., Moore, Freeman Leroy

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