|No-redundant Metrics for UML Class Diagram Structural Complexity|
M. Esperanza Manso, Marcela Genero, Mario Piattini
CAiSE 2003: 127-142
In software engineering it is widely acknowledged that the usage of metrics at the initial phases of the object oriented software life cycle can help designers to make better decisions and to predict external quality attributes, such as maintainability. Following this idea we have carried out three controlled experiments to ascertain if any correlation exists between the structural complexity and the size of UML class diagrams and their maintainability. We used 8 metrics for measuring the structural complexity of class diagrams due to the usage of UML relationships, and 3 metrics to measure their size. With the aim of determining which of these metrics are really relevant to be used as class diagrams maintainability indicators, we present in this work a study based on Principal Component Analysis. The obtained results show that the metrics related to associations, aggregations, generalizations and dependencies, are the most relevant whilst those related to size seem to be redundant.