An Object Is Worth a Thousand Words - Reification as the Key to Augmenting Software Development

Staff - Faculty of Informatics

Date: / -

USI Lugano Campus, room SI-003, Informatics building (Via G. Buffi 13)

You are cordially invited to attend the PhD Dissertation Defense of Tommaso DAL SASSO on Thursday June 14, 2018 at 15h30 in room SI-003 (Informatics building)


Software development has become more and more pervasive, with influence in almost every human activity. To be able to fit in so many different scenarios and constantly implement new features, software developers adopted methodologies with tight development cycles, sometimes with more than one release per day. With the constant growth of modern software projects and the consequent expansion of development teams, understanding all the components of a system becomes a task too big to handle.

In this context understanding the cause of an error or identifying its source is not an easy task, and correcting the erroneous behavior can lead to unexpected downtime of vital services. Being able to keep track of software defects, usually referred to as bugs, is crucial in the development of a project and in containing maintenance costs. For this purpose, the correctness and completeness of the information available has a great impact on the time required to understand and solve a problem.

In this thesis we present an overview of the current techniques commonly used to report software defects. We show why we believe that the state of the art needs to be improved, and present a set of approaches and tools to collect data from software failures, model it, and turn it into actionable knowledge. Our goal is to show that data generated from errors can have a great impact on daily software development, and how it can be employed to augment the development environment to assist software engineers to build and maintain software systems.

Dissertation Committee:

  • Prof. Michele Lanza, Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland (Research Advisor)
  • Prof. Mehdi Jazayeri, Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland (Internal Member)
  • Prof. Cesare Pautasso, Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland (Internal Member)
  • Prof. Rocco Oliveto, University of Molise, Italy (External Member)
  • Prof. Martin Pinzger, University of Klagenfurt, Austria (External Member)
  • Prof. Andy Zaidman, Technical University of Delft, The Netherlands (External Member)