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Abstract: Software visualization can be of great use for understanding and exploring asoftware system in an intuitive manner. Spatial representation of software is apromising approach of increasing interest. However, little is known about howdevelopers interact with spatial visualizations that are embedded in the IDE.In this paper, we present a pilot study that explores the use of SoftwareCartography for program comprehension of an unknown system. We investigatedwhether developers establish a spatial memory of the system, whether clusteringby topic offers a sound base layout, and how developers interact with maps. Wereport our results in the form of observations, hypotheses, and implications.Key findings are a that developers made good use of the map to inspect searchresults and call graphs, and b that developers found the base layoutsurprising and often confusing. We conclude with concrete advice for the designof embedded software maps.



Author: Adrian Kuhn, David Erni, Oscar Nierstrasz

Source: https://arxiv.org/




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