A semantic model of program faults

A. Jefferson Offutt, J. Huffman Hayes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

117 Scopus citations

Abstract

Program faults are artifacts that are widely studied, but there are many aspects of faults that we still do not understand. In addition to the simple fact that one important goal during testing is to cause failures and thereby detect faults, a full understanding of the characteristics of faults is crucial to several research areas in testing. These include fault-based testing, testability, mutation testing, and the comparative evaluation of testing strategies. In this workshop paper, we explore the fundamental nature of faults by looking at the differences between a syntactic and semantic characterization of faults. We offer definitions of these characteristics and explore the differentiation. Specifically, we discuss the concept of "size" of program faults - - the measurement of size provides interesting and useful distinctions between the syntactic and semantic characterization of faults. We use the fault size observations to make several predictions about testing and present preliminary data that supports this model. We also use the model to offer explanations about several questions that have intrigued testing researchers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 1996 ACM SIGSOFT International Symposium on Software Testing and Analysis, ISSTA 1996
EditorsWill Tracz, Steve J. Zeil
Pages195-200
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)0897917871, 9780897917872
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 1996
Event1996 ACM SIGSOFT International Symposium on Software Testing and Analysis, ISSTA 1996 - San Diego, United States
Duration: Jan 8 1996Jan 10 1996

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 1996 ACM SIGSOFT International Symposium on Software Testing and Analysis, ISSTA 1996

Conference

Conference1996 ACM SIGSOFT International Symposium on Software Testing and Analysis, ISSTA 1996
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego
Period1/8/961/10/96

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 1996 ACM.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software

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