Transactional pointcuts for aspect-oriented programming

  • Author / Creator
    Sadat Kooch Mohtasham, Seyed Hossein
  • In dynamic pointcut-advice join point models of Aspect-Oriented Programming (AOP), join points are typically selected and advised independently of each other. That is, the relationships between join points are not considered in join point selection and advice. But these inter-relationships are key to the designation and advice of arbitrary pieces of code when modularizing concerns such as exception handling and synchronization. Without a mechanism for associating join points, one must instead refactor (if possible) into one method the two or more related join points that are to be advised together. In practice, join points are often not independent. Instead, they form part of a higher-level operation that implements the intent of the developer (e.g. managing a resource). This relationship should be made more explicit. We extend the dynamic pointcut-advice join point model to make possible the designation, reification, and advice of interrelated join points. The Transactional Pointcut (transcut), which is a realization of this extended model, is a special join point designator that selects sets of interrelated join points. Each match of a transcut is a set of join points that are related through control flow, dataflow, or both. This allows transcuts to define new types of join points (pieces of computation) by capturing the key points of a computation and to provide effective access for their manipulation (i.e. advice). Essentially, transcuts almost eliminate the need for refactoring to expose join points, which is shown by others to have a significant negative effect on software quality. The transcut construct was implemented as an extension to the AspectJ language and integrated into the AspectBench compiler. We used transcuts to modularize the concern of exception handling in two real-world software systems. The results show that transcuts are effective in designating target join points without unnecessary refactorings, even when the target code is written obliviously to the potential aspectization.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
    • Department of Computing Science
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • H. James Hoover, Computing Science
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Gregor Kiczales, Computer Science, University of British Columbia
    • Jose Nelson Amaral, Computing Science
    • Kenny Wong, Computing Science
    • John C. Bowman, Mathematical and Statistical Sciences