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Quality Aspects in Verification and Validation

Foreword by the chair

Gianluca Mezzetti, Aarhus University, Denmark

Software has to be developed, released and deployed quickly to match the demand of a globalized audience of users and consumers. Yet, software quality can not be compromised in the process of speeding up these activities. Indeed, new software releases are required to match more and more strict requirements, driven by the impulse of users’ wishes or constrained by legal, social, political or ethical necessities.

The two conflicting demands for responsiveness and quality make it essential to develop automated techniques to support verification and validation (V&V) activities of functional and non-functional software requirements.

Following the well-established tradition of previous QUATIC editions, the ”Quality Aspects in Verification and Validation” track provides a forum to discuss novel V&V techniques, empirical V&V case studies and V&V success stories in the context of software quality assurance, with a particular focus on the challenges emerging from the new development workflows.

Unfortunately, this year no submission was accepted as a regular paper. This decision has been the result of a collective purpose aimed to preserve the high quality standard that the QUATIC conference reached over the years. However, this track recognizes that conferences, over journals, are the leading venues where novel contributions to the computer science community are presented before they are fully settled. Therefore, the program committee has decided to accept two papers in the form of work in progress. The two contributions describe promising ongoing research and we have no doubts that they will stimulate discussions and, possibly, collaborations, so nourishing the research field and the community around the themes of this track for the years to come.

In “Usability Reasoning using OWL 2 RL” the authors L. Martin and M. Dudda investigate usability requirements of web sites. One of the problems of automating usability analysis is that the requirements are usually expressed informally. Even in the EN ISO 9241-11 standard, the description is performed through usage scenarios, but no specific guidelines are prescribed. The main contribution of the paper is to identify some of the criteria that are a clear indication of an usability problem and to formally express them in the ontology language OWL 2 RL.

The authors incorporated these ideas into a tool, called AbRUPt, which is able to verify whether real web-sites met the identified usability criteria. The tool is then tested on a small case study, where it is shown able to disclose real usability problems.

In “Checking Critical Software System: A Formal Proposal” the authors investigate formal verification techniques for distributed systems. Their proposal uses a timed extension of the communicating sequential processes (Hoare, 1978) to specify complex systems, and a temporal logic to express their properties. In this setting, verification can be performed using off-the-shelf model checking tools. The authors test their framework on a case study, stemmed from the distributed architecture of mobile phone cell sites. They implemented a tool and showed that it is able to prove that two equivalent software components can be used interchangeably at different cell sites.

Our last words are to thank all those which made chairing this track an enjoyable experience. We are in debts with the wonderful members of the Program Committee for their insightful and honest reviews and the time dedicated to the subsequent discussions. We also thank all the authors who submitted a paper. Our personal gratitude goes to the general program committee chairs Mark Paulk, Ricardo J. Machado and Miguel A. Brito, who have always been available to assist us. 

Gianluca Mezzetti

Gianluca Mezzetti Gianluca Mezzetti is a member of CASA, the Center for Advanced Software Analysis, located at Department of Computer Science, Aarhus University, Denmark.

Track Committee

Chair: Gianluca Mezzetti, Aarhus University, Denmark

Program Committee:

Dave Clarke, Uppsala University, Sweden
Letterio Galletta, University of Pisa, Italy
Leonardo Mariani, University of Milan, Italy
Jan Midtgaard, Technical University of Denmark, Denmark
Patrick Lam, University of Waterloo, Canada
Mohammad Reza Mousavi, Halmstad University, Sweden
Marco Pistoia, IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center, USA
Andreas PodelskiUniversity of Freiburg, Germany
Philipp Rümmer, Uppsala University, Sweden

Call for papers:

The blooming of information society is pushing software development to move fast to match the expectations of a wide and globalised audience of users and consumers. This trend fosters the adoption of programming languages, development methodologies, network and hardware infrastructures that enable a fast shifting from prototyping to deployment and allow short release cycles. Yet, it is crucial that software systems satisfy their functional and non-functional requirements.

Fitting together the conflicting demands for speed and quality is a challenge that calls for new paradigms and methodologies of software verification and validation. The ICT Verification and Validation (V&V) track of QUATIC 2016 is a showcase and discussion forum for innovative research proposals that address this challenge.

Authors are invited to submit technical papers, empirical studies, success stories or any other form of original research contribution. Suggested topics of interest for this track include, but are not restricted to, V&V paradigms and methodologies such as:
  • model checking
  • abstract interpretation
  • static analysis
  • type systems
  • testing
  • test generation
  • models and calculi for software and requirements specification
  • software quality metrics and other quantitative methods 
  • dynamic/runtime/online techniques
for quality assurance in the context of: 
  • agile methodologies 
  • continuous delivery 
  • cloud computing: IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, SLA, etc.
  • mobile computing 
  • Internet of things 
  • automation in development 
  • dynamic programming languages.

Submission process:

Authors should submit to a PDF version of their paper. Full Papers must be in CPS format and not exceed 6 pages, including figures, references, and appendices. Work In Progress (WIP) works with relevant preliminary results are limited to 3 pages. Submissions must be original and will be reviewed by the Track Program Committee. Accepted papers will be included in the electronic proceedings of QUATIC’2016 published by Conference Publishing Services (CPS),  submitted for archiving in Xplore and CSDL, and submitted for indexing in ISI Web of Science, SCOPUS, ACM Portal, DBLP and DOI System, subject to one of the authors registering for the conference. The authors of the best papers of this thematic track will be invited to submit extended versions to the main track of the conference.

Important dates:
  • Paper submission: Sunday, April 17, May 15, 2016
  • Author's notifications: Sunday, May 15, June 12, 2016
  • Camera ready submission: Sunday, June 19, June 26, 2016

Previous Edition:

See details of the QUATIC 2014 edition of this track.

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