Research Keynote

Tanja Vos

Open Universiteit and
Universitat Politècnica de València

‘Testing without requirements?’

Good requirements are the basis for high quality software. However, in industrial practice, the availability of decent requirements are still more an exception than common practice. One of the activities, the quality of which depends highly on requirements, is testing. Testing software systems without requirements can lead to unstructured testing that cannot give good insights into the quality of the System Under Test (SUT). We propose a completely different way of testing, that starts from having no requirements documented and will build up a test-suite and requirements while we test. For this we will present TESTAR, a tool for automated testing at the user interface level. TESTAR is different from existing approaches for testing at the user interface in that it does not need scripts nor does it generate scripts. TESTAR just tests on the fly looking for faults. TESTAR has predefined oracles that can automatically test general-purpose system requirements. To make TESTAR test specific requirements we need to refine these oracles and direct the tests. This can be done incrementally while we are already testing! In the keynote we will describe this approach and explain the future need of a test tool that learns itself what the best strategy is for testing.


Prof. Dr. Tanja Vos is a full professor at the Open University (Netherlands) and an associate professor at the Universitat Politècnica de València (Spain). For over 20 years she has been teaching and researching in the area of software testing. She has worked with many companies on automated testing projects in an industrial setting. She is currently project lead for the approach for automated testing at the Graphical User Interface level. Tanja has successfully coordinated EU-funded projects (FITTEST, EvoTest) related to software testing and has been involved in various Erasmus and Leonardo initiatives that try to help business understand academia an vice versa. She started the Software Testing Innovation Alliance in Spain and is now involved in the European Alliance. She is also part of the dutch consortium of the ITEA TESTOMAT project that started this year. A project that will research and develop the coming three years the next level of test automation.

Industry Keynote

Michiel van Genuchten

VitalHealth Software

‘No Free lunch for software after all’

The impact of software on products, industries and society is significant. Software put the computer industry upside down in the 1990’s. Mobile phones followed in the first decade of this century. Medtech, the car industry and the financial industry are changing rapidly as we speak. The talk will be based on the personal experience of the presenter in various industries and the 40 columns that have been published in ‘Impact’ in IEEE Software. Insiders from companies such as Microsoft, Oracle, NASA, Hitachi, Tomtom and ASML have discussed the impact of software on their products and industries in the columns. Lessons learned include that software keeps growing at a surprisingly steady rate and volume (number of users of the software) is the key to success. A more sobering lesson is that software can easily be turned into a weapon of mass deceit, as has been proven by spammers, phishers, and an automobile company.

The lessons learned will be applied to better understand the requirements engineering and quality we need to create the software of the future. A couple of questions to be discussed: will we ever be able to engineer requirements and build proper roadmaps for future products? Is the quality we can achieve good enough for the applications we build? What foundations are needed for the next generation of software systems and where can science contribute?


Michiel van Genuchten is COO of VitalHealth Software since 2013. VitalHealth is a leading provider of cloud-based population health management solutions for the delivery of personalized care outside of the hospital, for example, in regional care networks that was acquired by Philips in December, 2017. He has been managing software teams and software businesses for over 25 years. Michiel has previously worked for companies such as Philips Electronics in The Netherlands and Straumann in Switzerland. Since 2010 he and Les Hatton run ‘Impact’; a series of columns in IEEE Software on the Impact of software on different industries and society.