Mining Source Code for Structural Regularities

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Executive Summary

During software development, design rules and contracts in the source code are often encoded through regularities, such as API usage protocols, coding idioms and naming conventions. The structural regularities that govern a program can aid in comprehension and maintenance of the application, but are often implicit or undocumented. Tool support for extracting these regularities from the source code can provide developers useful insights. But building such tool support is not trivial, in particular, because the informal nature of regularities results in frequent deviations and exceptions to these regularities.

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