Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Article up, and also: exegesis and code analysis/understanding

My first article kinda-sorta based on an exegetical approach (of my own prototype code) is up on the Vivtek site, and the six-day code rush to write code to build the article from a note database has really whetted my appetite for more of the same. There are all kinds of exegetical efforts I want to make, getting into code reading in a big way.

So I trolled around Google for salient things. Here's a list of interesting things.
  • TipsForReadingCode at was quite helpful as a set of ... well, tips for reading code.
  • Code comprehension tools at; the vast majority of this class of tool is closed-source and rather expensive. I think this is largely because large codebases are not typical for open source projects, but rather enterprise code, and enterprises have the money to pay for expensive tools. That's my reading, anyway. But:
  • cscope is a venerable tool for static analysis of C code, anyway, and has been perverted to handle other large-scale grep-like analyses of large numbers of files. The tool itself may or may not be something I'm interested in, but its approach is probably pretty valid.
  • cflow is another flow dependency analysis tool, also open source.
  • Perl is, as always, a special case.
  • Well, what about static code analysis in general? Here's another list of tools.
  • There's a clang-based analyzer.
  • This moribund project on code "aspects" looks fascinating.
  • Finally, a book on pattern-based OO refactoring, which also looks pretty fascinating.
So, as always, lots of people are doing things tangentially related to what I want to do, but nothing is 100% there - because what I want to do is an extract-then-literate-programming kind of thing. We'll see how much sense this approach makes. Wish me luck.

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