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Java's annotation mechanism allows one to extend its type system with non-null types. However, checking such types cannot be done using the existing bytecode verification algorithm. The authors extend this algorithm to verify non-null types using a novel technique that identifies aliasing relationships between local variables and stack locations in the JVM. They formalise this for a subset of Java Bytecode and report on experiences using their implementation. NullPointerExceptions are a common error arising in Java programs when references holding null are dereferenced. Java 1.5 allows one to annotate types and, hence, to extend the type system with NonNull types.
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