Extracting the Essential Cartographic Functionality of Programs on the Web
Following Aristotle, F. P. Brooks (1987) emphasizes the distinction between “essential difficulties” and “accidental difficulties” as a key challenge in software engineering. From the point of view of cartography, it would be desirable to identify the cartographic essence of a program, and subject it to additional scrutiny, while its accidental proper-ties, again from the point of view of cartography, are usually of lesser relevance to cartographic analysis. In this paper, two methods that facilitate extracting the cartographic essence of programs are presented: close reading of their source code, and the automated analysis of their runtime behavior. The advantages and shortcomings of both methods are discussed, followed by an outlook to future developments and potential applications.