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ICSE 2020
Wed 24 June - Thu 16 July 2020
Sat 11 Jul 2020 15:11 - 15:23 at Silla - A27-Software Architecture Chair(s): Patrizio Pelliccione

Feature flags are commonly used in mobile app development and can introduce technical debt related to deleting their usage from the codebase. This can adversely affect the overall reliability of the apps and increase their maintenance complexity. The absence of a developer initiative in reducing this debt necessitates the design of novel tools and workflows.

In this paper, we describe the design and implementation of Piranha, an automated code refactoring tool which is used to automatically generate differential revisions (a.k.a diffs) to delete code corresponding to stale feature flags. Piranha takes as input the name of the flag, expected treatment behavior, and the name of the flag’s author. It analyzes the ASTs of the program to generate appropriate refactorings which are packaged into a diff. The diff is assigned to the author of the flag for further processing, who can land it after performing any additional refactorings.

We have implemented Piranha to delete code in Objective-C,Java, and Swift programs and deployed it to handle stale flags in multiple Uber apps. We present our experiences with the deployment of Piranha from Dec 2017 to May 2019, including the following highlights: (a) generated code cleanup diffs for 1381 flags (17% of total flags), (b) 65% of the diffs landed without any changes, (c) over85% of the generated diffs compile and pass tests successfully, (d)around 80% of the diffs affect more than one file, (e) developers pro-cess more than 88% of the generated diffs, (f ) 75% of the generated diffs are processed within a week, and (g) Piranha diffs have been interacted with by ~200 developers across Uber.

Conference Day
Sat 11 Jul

Displayed time zone: (UTC) Coordinated Universal Time change

15:00 - 16:00
A27-Software ArchitectureNew Ideas and Emerging Results / Journal First / Demonstrations / Software Engineering in Practice at Silla
Chair(s): Patrizio PelliccioneUniversity of L'Aquila and Chalmers | University of Gothenburg
What should your Run-time Configuration Framework do to Help Developers?J1
Journal First
Mohammed SAYAGHQueen's University, Noureddine KerzaziEnsias-Rabat, Fabio PetrilloUniversity of Quebec at Chicoutimi, Khalil BennaniPolytechnique Montreal, Bram AdamsMCIS, Polytechnique Montréal
The SmartSHARK Ecosystem for Software Repository MiningDemo
Alexander TrautschUniversity of Göttingen, Fabian TrautschUniversity of Göttingen, Steffen HerboldUniversity of Göttingen, Benjamin LedelUniversity of Göttingen, Jens GrabowskiUniversity of Göttingen
Piranha: Reducing Feature Flag Debt at UberSEIP
Software Engineering in Practice
Murali Krishna RamanathanUber Technologies Inc., Lazaro ClappUber Technologies Inc, Raj BarikUber Technologies Inc., Manu SridharanUniversity of California Riverside
Towards Engineering Future Gameful ApplicationsNIER
New Ideas and Emerging Results
Antonio BucchiaroneFondazione Bruno Kessler, Trento, Italy, Antonio CicchettiMälardalen University, Annapaola MarconiFondazione Bruno Kessler, Trento, Italy
Software Development Data for Architecture Analysis: Expectation, Reality, and Future DirectionsSEIP
Software Engineering in Practice
Yuanfang Cai Drexel University, Rick KazmanUniversity of Hawai‘i at Mānoa