Visualization of OSGi-based Software Architectures in Virtual Reality

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Beginner
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Standard
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Classic software architecture visualizations such as UML diagrams widely used in practice but are not always the best solution, for example to get an high level overview of large component-based software systems. In this talk, we show other suitable technologies for software visualization to understand complex software architectures. Especially, we show how to visualize OSGi-based software architectures in Virtual Reality (VR) using VR headsets. We address the question, how software visualizing can help during the development process and what are the resulting benefits for developers and software testers. We focus on four aspects: Development, evaluation, quality assurance, and visualization technology. We demonstrate software visualization using the software ''IslandViz'', which visualizes OSGi-based software systems using an island metaphor, where islands on a virtual water level represents OSGi bundles, regions on the islands represents packages, and buildings represents classes. We describe how to get all relevant data for the visualization by repository mining on the whole source tree and data mining on source code level. We store all data in a graph database for further analysis and visualization. Through software visualization we were able to answer many important questions, which have already taken a lot of time in development and test-phases. In addition, it's very important to make the software architecture tangible, which makes it easier way to talk about technical problems in teams formed by people with different knowledge, communications skills, and backgrounds. 

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