Search in Source Code Based on Identifying Popular Fragments

  • Eduard Kuric
  • Mária Bieliková
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7741)


When programmers write new code, they are often interested in finding definitions of functions, existing, working fragments with the same or similar functionality, and reusing as much of that code as possible. Short fragments that are often returned by search engines as results to user queries do not give enough information to help programmers determine how to reuse them. Understanding code and determining how to use it, is a manual and time-consuming process. In general, programmers want to find initial points such as relevant functions. They want to easily understand how the functions are used and see the sequence of function invocations in order to understand how concepts are implemented. Our main goal is to enable programmers to find relevant functions to query terms and their usages. In our approach, identifying popular fragments is inspired by PageRank algorithm, where the “popularity” of a function is determined by how many functions call it. We designed a model based on the vector space model by which we are able to establish relevance among facts which content contains terms that match programmer’s queries. The result is an ordered list of relevant functions that reflects the associations between concepts in the functions and a programmer’s query.


search source code reuse pagerank ranking functional dependencies 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eduard Kuric
    • 1
  • Mária Bieliková
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Informatics and Software Engineering, Faculty of Informatics and Information TechnologiesSlovak University of Technology in BratislavaBratislavaSlovakia

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