Gordon Fraser, University of Sheffield, UK

Gamifying Software Testing

Abstract: Writing good software tests is difficult and not every developer’s favourite occupation. If an activity is so difficult, boring, or otherwise unattractive that people do not want to engage with it, then gamification offers a solution: By turning the activity into a fun and competitive task, participants engage, compete, and excel. In this talk, I will explore how this idea can be applied to software testing. Our ongoing work with the Code Defenders game demonstrates that players engage with testing, and perceive it as a fun activity. At the same time, by participating in the game, players produce test suites that are far superior to anything automated testing tools generate. This illustrates the potential of using gamification to address some of the many problems that we are facing today in software testing. There are, however, many challenges ahead, and I will outline some of the challenges and research opportunities related to gamifying software testing.


Arnaud Gotlieb, Simula Research Laboratory, Norway

Title: Constraint-Based Test Suite Optimization

Abstract: Test suite optimization is a crucial topic in software testing which was recently boosted by the contributions of constraint programming and search-based algorithms. The increased complexity of testing procedures and the combinatorial nature of the underlying testing problems, namely (multi-criteria) test suite reduction, prioritization and scheduling requires the usage of advanced techniques which have been developed in other contexts. In this talk, I will review some of these advances and their application to real-world testing problems that we address in Certus, the Norwegian research-based innovation centre dedicated to Software Validation and Verification.

Jeff Offutt

Jeff Offutt, George Mason University, USA

Beyond Test Automation

Abstract: Many software testing researchers have the goal of making their research valuable to industry. For example, STVR’s tagline is “Useful research in making better software,” and a common exhortation is that software engineering research should “help real engineers make real software better.” If so, then improving test automation is certainly an effective strategy. Increasing test automation is currently one of the most important and pervasive changes in the software industry. This talk will overview the key elements of test automation, summarize some of the recent research advances in test automation, explore how this change is playing out in industry, and present some current challenges in test automation. The talk will conclude by asking a simple question to go beyond test automation: “why are my tests so dumb?”