Software Testing

6201 WordsJun 20, 201025 Pages
Software Testing Carnegie Mellon University 18-849b Dependable Embedded Systems Spring 1999 Authors: Jiantao Pan mailto:%20jpan@cmu.edu Abstract: Software testing is any activity aimed at evaluating an attribute or capability of a program or system and determining that it meets its required results. [Hetzel88] Although crucial to software quality and widely deployed by programmers and testers, software testing still remains an art, due to limited understanding of the principles of software. The difficulty in software testing stems from the complexity of software: we can not completely test a program with moderate complexity. Testing is more than just debugging. The purpose of testing can be quality assurance, verification and…show more content…
But this alone will not guarantee to make the software better, because the Complexity Barrier [Beizer90] principle states: Software complexity(and therefore that of bugs) grows to the limits of our ability to manage that complexity. By eliminating the (previous) easy bugs you allowed another escalation of features and complexity, but his time you have subtler bugs to face, just to retain the reliability you had before. Society seems to be unwilling to limit complexity because we all want that extra bell, whistle, and feature interaction. Thus, our users always push us to the complexity barrier and how close we can approach that barrier is largely determined by the strength of the techniques we can wield against ever more complex and subtle bugs. [Beizer90] Regardless of the limitations, testing is an integral part in software development. It is broadly deployed in every phase in the software development cycle. Typically, more than 50% percent of the development time is spent in testing. Testing is usually performed for the following purposes: * To improve quality. As computers and software are used in critical applications, the outcome of a bug can be severe. Bugs can cause huge losses. Bugs in critical systems have caused airplane crashes, allowed space shuttle missions to go awry, halted trading on the stock market, and worse. Bugs can kill. Bugs can
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