Bauhaus Project (computing)

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Short description: Software research project collaboration

The Bauhaus project is a software research project collaboration among the University of Stuttgart, the University of Bremen, and a commercial spin-off company Axivion[1] formerly called Bauhaus Software Technologies. The Bauhaus project serves the fields of software maintenance and software reengineering.

Created in response to the problem of software rot,[2] the project aims to analyze and recover the means and methods developed for legacy software by understanding the software's architecture.[3] As part of its research, the project develops software tools (such as the Bauhaus Toolkit) for software architecture, software maintenance and reengineering and program understanding.[4]

The project derives its name from the former Bauhaus art school.[5]


The Bauhaus project was initiated by Erhard Ploedereder, Ph.D.[6] and Rainer Koschke, Ph.D. at the University of Stuttgart[7] in 1996.a It was originally a collaboration between the Institute for Computer Science (ICS) of the University of Stuttgart and the Fraunhofer-Institut für Experimentelles Software Engineering (IESE),[4][8] which is no longer involved.

Early versions of Bauhaus integrated and used Rigi for visualization.[9]:143–145

The commercial spin-off Axivion was started in 2005.[8] Research then was done at Axivion, the Institute of Software Technology, Department of Programming Languages at the University of Stuttgart as well as at the Software Engineering Group of the Faculty 03 at the University of Bremen.

Today, the academic version[5] of the Bauhaus project and the commercially sold Axivion Suite[1] are different products, as development at Axivion since 2010 is based on a new infrastructure which allowed Axivion to add new applications such as MISRA checking.[10]

Bauhaus Toolkit

The Bauhaus Toolkit (or simply the "Bauhaus tool") includes a static code analysis tool for C, C++, C#, Java and Ada code. It comprises various analyses such as architecture checking, interface analysis, and clone detection. Bauhaus was originally derived from the older Rigi reverse engineering environment,[11] which was expanded by Bauhaus due to the Rigi's limitations.[12] It is among the most notable visualization tools in the field.[13]

The Bauhaus tool suite aids the analysis of source code by creating abstractions (representations) of the code in an intermediate language as well as through a resource flow graph (RFG).[14] The RFG is a hierarchal graph with typed nodes and edges, which are structured in various views.

The toolkit is licensed at no charge for academic use (but this is a different product than the Axivion Suite).

Axivion and the Axivion Suite

For commercial use, the project has created a spin-off company, Axivion.[1] Axivion is headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany and provides licensing and support for the Axivion Suite. While the Axivion Suite has its origins in the Bauhaus project, it today is a different product with a much broader range of static code analyses, such as MISRA checking, architecture verification, include analysis, defect detection, and clone management.[15] It also provides IDE integrations for Eclipse and Microsoft Visual Studio not found in the academic project.

Project funding

The Bauhaus project was funded by the state of Baden-Württemberg, the Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft, the Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung, T-Nova Deutsche Telekom Innovationsgesellschaft Ltd., and Xerox Research.[16]


The Bauhaus tool suite has been used successfully in research and commercial projects.[14] It has been noted that Bauhaus is "perhaps [the] most extensive" customization of the well-known Rigi environment,[12]

The members of the project were repeatedly awarded with Best Paper Awards and were invited to submit journal papers several times.

In 2003, the Bauhaus project received the do it software award from MFG Stiftung Baden-Württemberg.[16]


  • ^a Regarding the project's founding, the years 1996 and 1997 seem to appear equally often among the various sources.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Axivion company homepage
  2. Holger Bruns. "Rolle rückwärts: 'Reverse Engineering' deckt Schwachstellen in der Softwarentwicklung auf." Deutschlandfunk (Radio Germany). 08.07.2006.
  3. Tullio Vardanega. Reliable software technology - Ada-Europe 2005:10th Ada-Europe International Conference on Reliable Software Technologies, York, UK, June 20 - 24, 2005, proceedings. Volume 3555 of Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Springer, 2005. ISBN:3-540-26286-5, ISBN:978-3-540-26286-2
  4. 4.0 4.1 Quigley, Aaron J. Large Scale Relational Information Visualization, Clustering, and Abstraction , pp. 155-159. Doctoral dissertation. Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering, University of Newcastle, August, 2001.
  5. 5.0 5.1 "The Bauhaus Project". 
  6. "Biographies." 5th IFIP Summer School on Software Technology and the Warm Up Workshop for ACM/IEEE ICSE 2010
  7. Keynote Speakers - WCRE 2005[yes|permanent dead link|dead link}}] Working Conference on Reverse Engineering
  8. 8.0 8.1 Jochen Quante. Dynamic Object Process Graphs (Dissertation) Universität Bremen. 30 January 2009
  9. Koschke, Rainer (2002). "Software Visualization for Reverse Engineering". Software Visualization. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. 2269. pp. 138–150. doi:10.1007/3-540-45875-1_11. ISBN 978-3-540-43323-1. 
  10. MISRA checking with Axivion Suite
  11. Holger Kienle and Xiaomin Wu REPORT FOR THE SORTIE STRUCTURED TOOL DEMONSTRATION. Technical report, University of Victoria, 2001.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Holger M. Kienle and Muller, Hausi A. The Rigi Reverse Engineering Environment. University of Victoria, Canada. 2008.
  13. B Cleary, A Le Gear, C Exton, J Buckley "A Combined Software Reconnaissance & Static Analysis Eclipse Visualisation Plug-in." 3rd IEEE International Workshop on Visualizing Software for Understanding and Analysis. 2005.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Karsten Sohr and Bernhard Berger. "Idea: Towards Architecture-Centric Security Analysis of Software." Engineering Secure Software and Systems: Second International Symposium, ESSoS 2010, Pisa, Italy, February 3-4, 2010, Proceedings. Volume 5965 of Lecture Notes in Computer Science LNCS sublibrary. SL 4, Security and cryptology Security and Cryptology. Springer, 2010. ISBN:3-642-11746-5, ISBN:978-3-642-11746-6
  15. Application of Axivion Suite
  16. 16.0 16.1 "Bauhaustechniken – höhere Produktivität bei Wartungsingenieuren durch „Corporate Memory“" do Softwareforschung aus Baden-Württemberg 2003–2007 . Page 42.

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