Focused Inspections to Support Defect Detection in Multi-Disciplinary Engineering Environments

D. Winkler, S. Biffl:
"Focused Inspections to Support Defect Detection in Multi-Disciplinary Engineering Environments";
Vortrag: 16th International Conference on Product-Focused Software Process Improvement (PROFES), Bozen, Italy; 02.12.2015 - 04.12.2015; in:"Proceedings of the 16th International Conference on Product-Focused Software Process Improvement (PROFES)", Springer, (2015), ISBN: 978-3-319-26843-9; S. 372 - 379.

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Abstract:


[Context] In Automation Systems Engineering (ASE) Environments, engineers coming from different disciplines, have to collaborate. Individual engineers, e.g., from electrical, mechanical, or software domains, apply domainspecific tools and related data models that hinder efficient collaboration due to limited capabilities for interaction and data exchange on technical and semantic level. Manual activities are required to synchronize planning data from different disciplines and can raise additional risks caused by defects and/or changes that cannot be identified efficiently. [Objective] Main objective is to improve (a) engineering processes by providing efficient data exchange mechanism and to support (b) defect detection performance in ASE environments. [Method] Software inspections (SI) are commonly used by engineers in Software Engineering (SE) by applying well-defined approaches to systematically identify defects early in the development process. In this paper we adapt the traditional SI process for application in ASE environments and provide a software tool to support frequent synchronization and focused reviews. We evaluate and discuss the adapted process in an industry context. [Results] Main results were that the adapted process and the software tool can be useful in the application context in order to identify defects early, increase overall product quality, and improve engineering processes in the ASE domain. [Conclusion] The proposed adapted inspection approach showed promising results to improve ASE projects.