Jens Dietrich's Home Page

I am an Associate Professor at the School of Engineering and Computer Science at Victoria University of Wellington.  I have a MSc in Mathematics and a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Leipzig. Between 1997 and 2003 I worked in industry / as consultant in Germany, Namibia, Switzerland and the UK. I returned to academia in 2003, spending 15 years at Massey University until October 2018. My research interests are in the areas of software composition and evolution and program analysis.

If you are a software engineer and like a challenge, have a look at the set of Java Puzzlers I have developed. They explore the mismatch between different notions of compatibility in Java-like languages. There are several empirical studies to assess the scope of the problem in practice. We also came up with a solution - a novel Java compiler developed in collaboration with Kamil Jezek. Dynamo can prevent many linkage errors as well as more complex problems like the hazard of covariant return types and bridge methods. A paper describing dynamo has been presented at ECOOP'16You might also be interested in this tool I have developed: the Massey Architecture Explorer (MAE). You can simply upload your compiled program, and MAE will visualise it and allow you to query your program for violations of OO design principles. Some articles I have written for developers on orthogonality and dependency management can be found here. I recently started to look into security issues related to object serialization. This has led to the discovery of several new vulnerabilities reported at ECOOP'17. Please check the publication pages for more links to published research outputs. 

If you are considering postgrad studies in software engineering, please email me. An overview of past and current postgrad projects I have supervised / I am supervising can be found hereIn order to secure quality supervision, I have to limit the number of PhD students I supervise. Also please familiarise yourself with scholarship options, and the cost of living in NZ. 

with Li, Shawn, Thilini and Kamil at Hobbiton at the APSEC'16 conference dinner

If you are an academic or a student studying at another university: I am working on making all lecture notes available to the public under the creative commons license, the first sets are now available. Additional material like video lectures and tutorials is only available to enrolled students. I also maintain an open source repository of examples I use for teaching software design and construction, incl. examples using design patterns, modularity, web application design, meta-programming etc. 

Project Funding / Contracts

My research into program analysis has been funded by several gifts from Oracle Inc with a total value of 146k USD between 2015 and 2019. The project “Closing the gaps in static program analysis" is funded under the NZ National Science Challenge SfTI Seed Project Scheme (2017-19), the total contract value is ca NZD 197k.

Recent & Current OC/PC work
 Recent Talks  (youtube) 

OWASP'18 talk on DOS attacks on Java Serialization (Evil Pickles)
ECOOP'17 talk on DOS attacks on Java Serialization (Evil Pickles)
ECOOP'16 talk on the dynamo compiler
OOPSLA'15 talk on Giga-scale Points-to Analysis
Melbourne JVM-UG talk about bin compatibility (Sept 2014)


My favourite quote is from Indira Ghandi:  “My grandfather once told me that there were two kinds of people: those who do the work and those who take the credit. He told me to try to be in the first group; there was much less competition.”


Victorias University of Wellington
Kelburn Campus

Subpages (1): Office Location