Using memetic algorithm for robustness testing of contract-based software models

Bahrampour, Anvar and Rafe, Vahid. 2021. Using memetic algorithm for robustness testing of contract-based software models. Artificial Intelligence Review, ISSN 0269-2821 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Graph Transformation System (GTS) can formally specify the behavioral aspects of complex systems through graph-based contracts. Test suite generation under normal conditions from GTS specifications is a task well-suited to evolutionary algorithms such as Genetic and Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) metaheuristics. However, testing the vulnerabilities of a system under unexpected events such as invalid inputs is essential. Furthermore, the mentioned global search algorithms tend to make big jumps in the system’s state-space that are not concentrated on particular test goals. In this paper, we extend the HGAPSO approach into a cost-aware Memetic Algorithm (MA) by making small local changes through a proposed local search operator to optimize coverage score and testing costs. Moreover, we test GTS specifications not only under normal events but also under unexpected situations. So, three coverage-based testing strategies are investigated, including normal testing, robustness testing, and a hybrid strategy. The effectiveness of the proposed test generation algorithm and the testing strategies are evaluated through a type of mutation analysis at the model-level. Our experimental results show that (1) the hybrid testing strategy outperforms normal and robustness testing strategies in terms of fault-detection capability, (2) the robustness testing is the most cost-efficient strategy, and (3) the proposed MA with the hybrid testing strategy outperforms the state-of-the-art global search algorithms.

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“This version of the article has been accepted for publication, after peer review (when applicable) but is not the Version of Record and does not reflect post-acceptance improvements, or any corrections. The Version of Record is available online at: Use of this Accepted Version is subject to the publisher’s Accepted Manuscript terms of use”


Robustness testing; Model testing; Graph transformation specification; Specification testing; Coverage criteria

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6 August 2020Published Online
February 2021Published

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Date Deposited:

02 May 2023 08:36

Last Modified:

02 May 2023 08:36

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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