Matchmaker looks interesting and may help in some cases to ease and speed up maintenance / enhancement of object-oriented programs, particularly open-source ones.
Article about Matchmaker:
(The above article was republished on the PhysOrg site courtesy of MIT News (http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/)
[ Matchmaker is a research system that "automatically determines how objects in a large software project interact, so it can inform latecomers which objects they will need to design certain types of functions. The system could be of particular use to programmers working with open-source software, whose licensing terms require that its underlying code be publicly disclosed. Someone wishing to simply add a function to a common open-source program, for instance, may not want to spend the week it takes to get up to speed on all the program's objects.
Matchmaker builds up its database of object linkages in a program's source code by monitoring the program's execution. In the case of Eclipse, it noticed that every time a Scanner was invoked, so were the other objects.
Foster points out that Matchmaker can't answer all the questions that a programmer new to an application might have.
Still, Foster says, in the instances where Matchmaker is applicable, "you're going to get result that's vastly superior. You're going to get a result in seconds or minutes instead of having to search on Google, filter out a lot of bad answers, figure out what people meant when they explained various things — if the tool works for the problem, it's very useful." ]
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- Vasudev Ram @ Dancing Bison