Worcester Polytechnic Institute Electronic Theses and Dissertations Collection

Title page for ETD etd-052907-001341

Document Typethesis
Author NameYang, Shoushen
TitleAn Investigation of Modular Dependencies in Aspects, Features and Classes
DepartmentComputer Science
  • George T. Heineman, Advisor
  • Gary Pollice, Reader
  • Michael Gennert, Department Head
  • Keywords
  • conflict
  • precedence
  • dependency
  • feature-oriented programming
  • object-oriented design
  • aspect-oriented programming
  • Date of Presentation/Defense2007-06-01
    Availability unrestricted


    The essence of software design is to construct well-defined, encapsulated modules that are composed together to build the desired software application. There are several design paradigms in use today, including traditional Object-Oriented Programming (OOP), Feature-Oriented Programming (FOP), Aspect-Oriented Programming (AOP) and Instance-Oriented Programming (IOP). FOP studies the modularity of features in product lines, where a feature is an increment in program functionality. AOP aims to separate and modularize aspects when an aspect is a crosscutting concern. IOP, as an extension to FOP, makes the layers work like object factories. While each is good at solving different types of problems, they are closely related. The composition of modules is complicated because modules have (often hidden) dependencies on other modules. This thesis aims to better understand the way dependencies are managed by each approach. Based on this, we focus on the precedence issue in AOP and FOP, that is, how designers are able to specify the order by which modules are composed together. Different precedence means different semantics, but the current tools can not guarantee the correct precedence is adopted. We first solve the precedence issue separately for AOP and FOP, then based on this, we come up with a unified model to solve the precedence issue by using source code annotations to specify the precedence. We evaluate our technique with use cases.

  • shoushen.pdf

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