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The Software IP Detective’s Handbook: Measurement, Comparison, and Infringement Detection by Bob Zeidman

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Part IV. Source Code Differentiation

“Data! Data! Data!” he cried impatiently. “I can’t make bricks without clay.”

Sherlock Holmes in The Adventure of the Copper Beeches

In this part I cover some basic methods of comparing and measuring software. In particular, I define software source code differentiation, which is a mathematical method for comparing software source code to find basic similarities and differences. The technique of differentiation is particularly useful for finding code that has been directly copied from one program to another. While other methods exist for finding copying, as will be described later in this book, source code differentiation is better at determining not only what has been copied but also the percentage of copying ...

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