gccXfront

gccXfront: Exploiting gcc as a front end for program comprehension tools via XML/XSLT. Parsing programming languages is an essential component of the front end of most program comprehension tools. Languages such as C++ can be difficult to parse and so it can prove useful to re-use existing front ends such as those from the GNU compiler collection, gcc. We have modified gcc to provide syntactic tags in XML format around the source code which can greatly enhance our comprehension of the program structure. Further, by using XML transformation stylesheets, the XML outputted by our modified gcc can be translated into a more readable format. Our tool, gccXfront leverages the power and portability of the gcc suite, since any C, C++, Objective C or Java program can be processed using gcc. Our tool can thus act as a bridge between gcc and other program comprehension tools that accept XML formatted input.

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