Collapsible Tabular Visualization of Aspects in Object Oriented Programming

Md Nahid Rahman, Md Naim Hossain, Young Lee


Due to its implicit invocation nature of
Aspect Oriented Programming (AOP), locating a joint
point for executing aspect is extremely difficult. Hence,
it becomes difficult to understand the application’s
flow and behavior. Current AOP visualization tools have
limitations such as high dependency on other tools,
confusing and excessive use of color to represent aspects
and using an outdated version of AspectJ. In this
paper, we propose a new approach collapsible
tabular visualization tool to visualize and represent AOP
features to aid the programmers in better
understanding AOP applications. We have come out
of traditional color-based aspect visualization and developed
a web based tool: AspectViz that visualizes the aspects in
a simple collapsible table. A questionnaire containing
four different questions related to aspects visualization
was developed to compare AspectViz with current
visualization tools. 20 graduate students and
professional software developers were invited to participate
in the test experiment as well as the survey. We have
compared its performance with existing AOP
visualization tools i.e. the AJDT and the AspectMaps and
showed how it outperformed in many cases, which is no
color confusion, simple tabular visualization of aspects, no
dependency on third-party software, easy to understand and
the time it took to find a particular aspect was less etc.
Collapsible tabular visualization enhanced the usability and
performance of aspect locating in aspect-oriented

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