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The Java Elucidator

Elucidative programming is a variant of Literate programming, as coined by Donald Knuth in the early eighties. Elucidative programming focuses on special aspects like keeping the source code intact by showing the source code and documentation side by side in an Internet browser.

The Java Elucidator supports the elucidative programming paradigm. The Java Elucidator consists of:

  • A web server - for presentation of documentation and source code
  • A abstractor - for abstracting syntactically elements of both source code and documentation
  • A database interface - for storing and retrieving abstractions and relations between source code and documentation
  • An Emacs major mode - for support when writing documentation
The Java Elucidator requires:
  • A Tomcat 3.3 server - for running servlets
  • Access to a mySQL database
  • Emacs editor - only needed if
  • An Emacs editor - if you wish to use the supplied major mode
The Java Elucidator is an academic project started at Aalborg University, Denmark. The project was started be a group of masters students and is now maintained by a PhD. student at Aalborg University.

The Java Elucidator is (slowly) evolving and people outside our research unit have show interest in The Java Elucidator. Hence, we have decided to make The Java Elucidator public available. In addition, we have decided to make the project open source as past developers and researcher outside Aalborg University have an interest in evolving The Java Elucidator. Furthermore, The Java Elucidator might be of interest outside the research community, but people from e.g. industry may have special needs (hence, need to be able to change the source code).

For further information and papers on the elucidative programming project:

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask me:
Thomas Vestdam (current maintainer) -


The past developers of The Jave Elucidator are:
  • Max Rydahl Andersen
  • Claus Nyhus Christensen
  • Kristian Lykkegaard Sørensen
  • Vathanan Kumarathurai
  • Søren Staun-Pedersen