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Title: Using Compression Algorithms to Support the Comprehension of Program Traces
Authors: Walkinshaw, Neil
Afshan, Sheeva
McMinn, Phil
First Published: 12-Jul-2010
Presented at: International Workshop on Dynamic Analysis (WODA 2010), 12 July 2010, Trento, Italy.
Publisher: Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Citation: Proceedings of the International Workshop on Dynamic Analysis (WODA 2010), 2010, pp. 8-13
Abstract: Several software maintenance tasks such as debugging, phase-identification, or simply the high-level exploration of system functionality, rely on the extensive analysis of program traces. These usually require the developer to manually discern any repeated patterns that may be of interest from some visual representation of the trace. This can be both time-consuming and inaccurate; there is always the danger that visually similar trace-patterns actually represent distinct program behaviours. This paper presents an automated phase-identification technique. It is founded on the observation that the challenge of identifying repeated patterns in a trace is analogous to the challenge faced by data-compression algorithms. This applies an established data compression algorithm to identify repeated phases in traces. The SEQUITUR compression algorithm not only compresses data, but organises the repeated patterns into a hierarchy, which is especially useful from a comprehension standpoint, because it enables the analysis of a trace at varying levels of abstraction.
DOI Link: 10.1145/1868321.1868323
ISBN: 978-1-4503-0137-4
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Conference Paper
Rights: ACM New York, NY, USA ©2010. Deposited with reference to ACM's Copyright Policy, which permits posting of author-prepared versions of the work on a publicly accessible server of their employer. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of ACM for your personal use. Not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Proceedings of the International Workshop on Dynamic Analysis (WODA 2010), 2010, pp. 8-13.
Appears in Collections:Conference Papers & Presentations, Dept. of Computer Science

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