Panel "Reverse Engineering in Industry"

Panel summary

WCRE has a tradition of organizing an effective interaction between industry and research. In particular, an industrial keynote may be typically invited to represent the industrial point of view on software reverse engineering at the conference. Along these lines, WCRE 2013 features an extended panel with excellent panelists from diverse areas of the software industry with key relevance for the conference topic.

The panel aims at a reflection of the status quo of software reverse engineering in industry, the relationship between industry vs. research in the reverse engineering context, the adoption potential for available reverse engineering knowledge, the actual or conceived relation between reverse engineering and other "related" paradigms in software engineering, and finally, the diverse set of industrial realities that call for or impede software reverse engineering.


  • Extended abstract: [.pdf]
  • Contribution by Darius Blasband: [.pdf]
  • Contribution by Jens Borchers: [.pdf]
  • Contribution by Elliot Chikofsky: [.pdf]


  • Darius Blasband, CEO, Raincode
  • Jens Borchers, Senior Executive Manager, Steria Mummert Consulting AG
  • Elliot Chikofsky, EM&I Fellow, Engineering Management & Integration, USA
  • Sven Euteneuer, Global Head of Technical Quality, SQS
  • Wolfgang Pfeifer, Research Expert, HANA Platforms, SAP AG


Ralf Lämmel, University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany

Panel details

Panelist Darius Blasband


Talking about what the market needs is pointless. Because we can all agree it needs many things it just does not want. And selling what the market wants is hard enough. Convincing the market of what it needs is a losing proposition. Hence, I plan to focus on what makes or breaks an industrial solution in the reverse engineering field.


Darius Blasband has a Master's degree and a PhD from the Université Libre De Bruxelles. His interests cover all aspects of programming language processing, including compilation, reverse engineering, parsing technologies, types systems and optimizations. He runs RainCode, based in Brussels, Belgium, which offers products and services for the legacy modernization market. He is responsible for product design and strategic alliances.

Panelist Jens Borchers


A lot of different aspects have been addressed by the academic reverse engineering community over the last 25 years, nonetheless only a few have been adopted by the industry. Mainly because the primary “pain” languages and environments of the industry were neglected by the scientific community. So, we are still facing immense challenges to deal with the huge legacy (or heritage) of nearly 50 years of software development. Especially since many of the original developers are not around anymore.


After his studies in Mathematics, Physics and Computer Science, Jens Borchers started his professional at Airbus Industries. In 1988, he was co-founder of a company specialized in reengineering large application systems and has managed several large reengineering projects in Germany, from 1992 in collaboration and later with an own off-shore company in India. From 2005 to 2012, as a member of the migration team at SCHUFA he accounted for software quality assurance of the new core system, redeveloped from a 35-year-old host system. Since 2012, he is working as a service manager for Steria Mummert Consulting in the application management services area.

Panelist Elliot Chikofsky


I plan to highlight some industrial objectives for reverse engineering from the 1990s that have NOT been achieved, or not sufficiently dealt with, by the WCRE and reengineering community.


A principal founder of WCRE, and co-author of the 1990 taxonomy work around which the reverse engineering and reengineering fields coalesced, Elliot Chikofsky was described in the Encyclopedia of Software Engineering (1994) as "a developer, organizer, and evangelist of software engineering automation, and…a consultant on management issues regarding the application of software technology to solving business problems…" He is the Program Coordinator of Computer Engineering Technology for Northeastern University's College of Professional Studies, and is also on the faculty of the University of Phoenix and is EM&I Fellow with the firm Engineering Management & Integration. He chairs WCRE's principal sponsor, the Reengineering Forum industry association.

Panelist Sven Euteneuer


Reverse engineering is more necessary than ever, especially concerning the typical constellation of non-IT organizations single-sourcing complex IT solutions from systems integrators, typically in a way that provides zero incentive to the systems integrator to consider questions above and beyond the scope of the awarded project. However, the oft-seen focus in the field on artefacts such as code and (at times) architecture is far too short-sighted. It is essential that all relevant s/w lifecycle artefacts be considered, with a special focus on assets such as testware.


Sven mastered in Computer Science at the Rheinische-Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn. He has been active in software development and software maintenance in a variety of roles, ranging from developer to quality manager. Since joining SQS AG in 2007 he has increased his focus on technical quality of software systems. As Global Head of Technical Quality, Sven is responsible for SQS’ global portfolio of technical services.

Panelist Wolfgang Pfeifer


Reengineering and Standard software? The problems and challenges, some is faced with in the process of reengineering and renovation of individual software solutions, appear as well if it is about so called standard or packaged solutions. Nevertheless this topic area is not or only very rarely touched in reengineering research work. Let’s take simply a closer look at the specifics. It is worth to do so.


Wolfgang Pfeifer works in Information technologies since 1992. After his studies in High-frequency Engineering and Computer Science, he worked in companies of various size in various roles (Consultant, trainer, developer customer development, developer standard applications, support engineer, product manager, software architect, researcher). In 1999 he joined SAP AG and covered different positions in research and development. During his professional IT life he focused on the following areas: Relational Databases and database based application development, Analytical Applications and Data Warehousing, Model driven development and related tools. Since 2011 he is member of a research area, in which he is concentrating on methods, tools and approaches to support internal software development.

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