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Automated Tracing

A grant from the National Science Foundation will help a computer science professor and two  graduate students work on improving the accuracy of automated traceabilty.

Davide Falessi was awarded a grant for $176,488 for his project, titled Semantically-Enhanced Software Traceability for Supporting Human-Centric Tasks. The grant period began in August and extends through July of 2023.

In software, traceability is used to prove that requirements have been fulfilled. In most cases, traceability is used to give the history of an item and to help track the item.

“For example, traceability provides support for safety analysis, compliance verification, test regression, software analytics, and many other software engineering activities,”  Falessi said. “In practice, many safety-critical systems suffer from inadequate or inaccurate traceability due to the cost and difficulty of manually creating and maintaining trace links. Therefore, the project aims at automating the tracing process.”

Falessi and his two students will provide techniques for increasing the safety of software applications in safety-critical domains, such as medical and defense.

One graduate student, Alberto Rodriguez, has already been hired. Rodriguez, a fourth year software engineering student, likely to be enrolled in the blended computer science program, will work on the project for the next two years.

Falessi, a Faculty Scholar with the Institute for Advanced Technology & Public Policy's Open Government Initiative, has experience in collaborating with several software companies, including Cisco, Keymind, DNV (Norway), and Finmeccanica (Italy). His main research interest is in devising and empirically assessing solutions to concrete software engineering problems.

Falessi received his Ph.D. in computer engineering from the University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy.

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