Debugging and source analysis tool for Ada

harvard!husc6!array!len (Leonard Vanek)
Wed, 5 Jul 89 12:54:20 EDT

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Debugging and source analysis tool for Ada harvard!husc6!array!len (1989-07-05)
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From: harvard!husc6!array!len (Leonard Vanek)
Newsgroups: comp.lang.ada,,comp.compilers
Keywords: Static analysis, data flow, control flow, views
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 89 12:54:20 EDT
Organization: Array Systems Computing, Toronto, CANADA


At Array Systems Computing we have just completed developing a
prototype of a static debugger for Ada. Among the features of this
tool are:

  - the ability to display various properly formatted but restricted
      VIEWS of source code (i.e. eliding uninteresting code in order to
      allow the logic to stand out more clearly),

  - the ability to BROWSE programs following the control flow or data
      flow rather than the linear syntax of the code,

  - maintenance of SEARCH HISTORY to facilitate automatic BACKTRACKING
      when a search in a particular direction fails to find what the user
      is looking for.

The Expert Dataflow and Static Analysis tool (EDSA) operates on
uninstrumented source code. It requires neither execution nor
compilation of the code to be examined. Although the EDSA parser does
give some diagnostics, EDSA assumes that the program has already been
successfully compiled. You would use EDSA to find a bug in a program's
logic or to look for unforeseen ramifications of a proposed change,
not to fix syntax or semantic errors that would be found by a compiler.

Admittedly such a tool is more useful for poorly structured code than
for the kind of code that the design of Ada is meant to encourage.
However, it can still be useful for analyzing structured code.
Furthermore, it is unfortunately a fact of life that not all Ada
programs are properly structured.

We are currently looking for Alpha test sites to try out EDSA and
provide us with some feedback on its design and implementation.
EDSA runs on either vanilla Unix systems (Sun for sure, but probably
all others because it makes no use of machine or system dependent
features other than termcap) or MS-DOS machines. It makes no use of
bitmap graphics or windows, so it works on most terminals. On MS-DOS
machines it will support a mouse -- specifically the Logitec Mouse.
The Sun version does not use the mouse.

If you are interested in becoming an Alpha tester, please contact me
at the address shown below. Describe your environment (e.g. hardware,
OS, size and complexity of subject programs) and how EDSA might be
useful to you. Please do not ask for a trial copy of EDSA unless you
intend to try it out immediately.

Leonard Vanek UUCP: ... uunet!attcan!lsuc!array!len
Array Systems Computing Inc. or ... utzoo!dciem!array!len
5000 Dufferin St. Suite 200 or lsuc!array!
Downsview, Ont. M3H 5T5 Phone: (416) 736-0900
Canada FAX: (416) 736-4715

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