Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Darwin Enhances Software Quality

19.02.2009
Selection, mutation and recombination are concepts familiar to us from Darwin's theory of evolution. At the embedded world conference, which is being held in Nuremberg from 3 to 5 March, Fraunhofer FIRST will be demonstrating how these principles of nature can help improve software testing.

In the natural world, laws of evolutionary biology such as selection, cross-breeding and mutation ensure that plants and living beings adapt to changed environmental conditions, thus securing the survival of species. How these laws can be utilized to improve software quality will be demonstrated by Fraunhofer FIRST researchers at the 2009 embedded world conference (Hall 11, Stand 11-101) from 3 to 5 March.

Software testing consists of many individual test cases, which check specific aspects of the system under test. Crucial to the success of the software testing is the quality of these individual test cases. In the European project EvoTest, Fraunhofer FIRST is cooperating with industrial and research partners to develop software that automatically generates test cases for software testing. Instead of the test cases being generated randomly, selection, mutation and recombination are used to ensure their optimal adaptation to the respective test objective. This increases the efficiency of the ever more extensive test phase.

Combining Quantity with Quality

Test cases are usually generated manually or randomly. The former method is very time-consuming and therefore cost-intensive. The latter method involves generating and executing a very large number of test cases in order to test a reasonably acceptable portion of the software code. EvoTest now enables high-quality test cases to be automatically generated, executed and evaluated.

As with any systematic test process, users of EvoTest must begin by defining a test objective. An appropriate fitness function must then be defined, which evaluates the quality of the individual test cases with respect to the test objective. It begins by analyzing the initial population of test cases, to borrow a term from evolutionary biology. These are already existing test cases, which were generated manually, for example. If the defined test objective is already attained with the first generation, the evolutionary process is ended. Otherwise, individual test cases are selected, slightly altered or combined with each other. As in the theory of evolution, these processes are termed selection, mutation and recombination. The second generation is then re-subjected to the fitness evaluation, and the rest of the process proceeds as in the first round. With each repetition, a new generation of test cases is created that gets closer to attaining the test objective.

EvoTest can be deployed, for example, in hardware-in-the-loop test environments for safety-relevant embedded systems, for controllers' C code as well as for testing desktop software. The software can be integrated into all existing test systems. There is no need to discard established test methods; the new method improves them and makes them more efficient.

EvoTest is funded by the European Union as part of its 6th Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development. The project, which is headed by the Instituto Tecnológico de Informática in Valencia, Spain, brings together eight industrial and research partners. The three-year project ends in September 2009.

At the embedded world conference, Fraunhofer FIRST will also be demonstrating the benefits of specification-based testing. For more detailed information, please visit: http://www.first.fraunhofer.de/veranstaltung/embeddedworld09

We will be glad to provide graphic material and an infographic on request. Further information is available from:

Mitra Motakef-Tratar
Institute Communication
Phone: + 49 (0) 30/6392-1814
E-Mail: mitra.motakef-tratar@first.fraunhofer.de

Mirjam Kaplow | Fraunhofer Gesellschaft
Further information:
http://www.first.fraunhofer.de
http://www.first.fraunhofer.de/veranstaltung/embeddedworld09

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht New epidemic management system combats monkeypox outbreak in Nigeria
15.12.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung

nachricht Gecko adhesion technology moves closer to industrial uses
13.12.2017 | Georgia Institute of Technology

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>