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A case study in specification and implementation testing

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2 Author(s)
Miller, T. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Liverpool Univ., UK ; Strooper, P.

Achieving consistency between a specification and its implementation is an important part of software development In previous work, we have presented a method and tool support for testing a formal specification using animation and then verifying an implementation of that specification. The method is based on a testgraph, which provides a partial model of the application under test. The testgraph is used in combination with an animator to generate test sequences for testing the formal specification. The same testgraph is used during testing to execute those same sequences on the implementation and to ensure that the implementation conforms to the specification. So far, the method and its tool support have been applied to software components that can be accessed through an application programmer interface (API). In this paper, we use an industrially-based case study to discuss the problems associated with applying the method to a software system with a graphical user interface (GUI). In particular, the lack of a standardised interface, as well as controllability and observability problems, make it difficult to automate the testing of the implementation. The method can still be applied, but the amount of testing that can be carried on the implementation is limited by the manual effort involved.

Published in:

Software Engineering Conference, 2004. 11th Asia-Pacific

Date of Conference:

30 Nov.-3 Dec. 2004