A bioinspired discrete heuristic algorithm to generate the effective structural model of a program source code

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When the source code of a software is the only product available, program understanding has a substantial influence on software maintenance costs. The main goal in code comprehension is to extract information that is used in the software maintenance stage. Generating the structural model from the source code helps to alleviate the software maintenance cost. Software module clustering is thought to be a viable reverse engineering approach for building structural design models from source code. Finding the optimal clustering model is an NP-complete problem. The primary goals of this study are to minimize the number of connections between created clusters, enhance internal connections inside clusters, and enhance clustering quality. The previous approaches' main flaws were their poor success rates, instability, and inadequate modularization quality. The Olympiad optimization algorithm was introduced in this paper as a novel population-based and discrete heuristic algorithm for solving the software module clustering problem. This algorithm was inspired by the competition of a group of students to increase their knowledge and prepare for an Olympiad exam. The suggested algorithm employs a divide-and-conquer strategy, as well as local and global search methodologies. The effectiveness of the suggested Olympiad algorithm to solve the module clustering problem was evaluated using ten real-world and standard software benchmarks. According to the experimental results, on average, the modularization quality of the generated clustered models for the ten benchmarks is about 3.94 with 0.067 standard deviations. The proposed algorithm is superior to the prior algorithms in terms of modularization quality, convergence, and stability of results. Furthermore, the results of the experiments indicate that the proposed algorithm can be used to solve other discrete optimization problems efficiently. (c) 2023 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of King Saud University. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).


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Olympiad Optimization Algorithm, Software Module Clustering, Cohesion, Modularization Quality


Journal of King Saud University-Computer and Information Sciences

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