Volume 76, Number 6, December 2006
|Page(s)||1221 - 1227|
|Section||Interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology|
|Published online||16 November 2006|
Fractal dimension in software networks
Dipartimento di Ingegneria Elettrica ed Elettronica Università di Cagliari - piazza d'armi, 09123 Cagliari, Italy
Accepted: 19 October 2006
A large number of real networks are characterized by two fundamental properties: they are small world and scale-free. A recent paper demonstrated that the structure of many complex networks is also self-similar under a length-scale transformation, and calculated their fractal dimension using the “box counting” method. We studied nine large object-oriented software systems, finding that the graphs associated to these networks are self-similar. We also studied the time evolution of the fractal dimension during system growth, finding a significant correlation between the fractal dimension and object-oriented complexity metrics known to be correlated with software fault-proneness. Thus, in software systems the fractal dimension could be considered as a measure of internal complexity, and consequently of the system quality.
PACS: 89.75.-k – Complex systems / 89.75.Da – Systems obeying scaling laws / 61.43.Hv – Fractals; macroscopic aggregates (including diffusion-limited aggregates)
© EDP Sciences, 2006
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