Optimization Techniques for Algorithmic Debugging

David Insa, Josep Silva


Nowadays, undetected programming bugs produce a waste of billions of
dollars per year to private and public companies and institutions. In spite
of this, no significant advances in the debugging area that help developers
along the software development process have been achieved yet. In fact,
the same debugging techniques that were used 20 years ago are still being
used now. Although some alternatives have appeared, they are still a long
way until they become useful enough to be part of the software development
process. One of such alternatives is Algorithmic Debugging, which
abstracts the information the user has to investigate to debug the program,
allowing them to focus on what, rather than how, is happening. This abstraction
comes at a price: the granularity level of the bugs that can be detected
allows for isolating wrongly implemented functions, but which part of them
contains the bug cannot be found out yet. This work is a short introduction
of some published papers that focus on improving Algorithmic Debugging
in many aspects. Concretely, the main aims of these papers are to reduce the
time the user needs to detect a programming bug as well as to provide the
user with more detailed information about where the bug is located.

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