Authored by: Pamela Vercellone-Smith , Raghvinder S. Sangwan

Encyclopedia of Software Engineering

Print publication date:  November  2010
Online publication date:  November  2010

Print ISBN: 9781420059779
eBook ISBN: 9781351249270
Adobe ISBN:


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Given the immense scale and complexity of today's software systems, effective visualization techniques are vital for not only facilitating their understanding but also for monitoring the impact newly implemented changes will have on the structural complexity of such systems. Software visualization techniques can provide diagrammatic representations of a system's requirements and design in the early phases of its development life cycle but their most significant benefit is in analyzing code and design during the maintenance and evolution phases to prevent architectural erosion and drift that can lead systems into becoming excessively complex or complicated. These techniques are also useful in understanding non-documented legacy systems where code is the only specification there is to work with.

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