Myra Cohen, the Lanh & Oanh Nguyen Endowed Chair of Software Engineering and professor of computer science; and James Lathrop, assistant professor of computer science, have been awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Harnessing their combined expertise in developing new testing methods for scientific and molecular programs and their simulations, the grant will fund their research for three years.
Cohen and Lathrop’s $500,000 grant was awarded through the NSF’s competitive Division of Computing and Communication Foundations.
During the past 20 years, scientific computing has become a staple for exploration and reasoning about natural processes. For instance, researchers in bioinformatics routinely use computational tools to understand the relationship between a genetic sequence and the behavior of an organism with that sequence.
Research questions concerning natural processes range from decoding biological pathways to determining if a mutation can lead to cancer. Many new programming environments, simulation platforms, and tools have been developed to support these new research directions and are now widely used.
Since these programs are being employed to advance scientific discovery and to perform critical tasks, there is a need to ensure they behave correctly. This project develops foundations for software testing of these computing systems using natural representations. It focuses on developing quality test suites, handling error rates in test outcomes and validating behavior in the absence of known answers.
For more detailed information about the NSF grant and this research, visit the NSF website.