CICS assistant professor Yuriy Brun and collaborators have been recognized with a Best Paper Award for their paper, Continuous Analysis of Collaborative Design, at the IEEE International Conference on Software Architecture (ICSA 2017) in Gothenburg, Sweden, April 3-7, 2017.
The winning paper, which was co-authored by Jae young Bang of the Kakao Corporation and Nenad Medvidovic of the University of Southern California, presents FLAME, a framework to help software engineers be more aware of one another's concurrent work and possible collaboration conflicts.
FLAME works by speculatively merging the design changes the engineers make in the background, without distracting the architects from their current work, unless the changes either cannot be merged or, when merged, violate system requirements. For example, FLAME may analyze two architects' design decisions and find that while each of decisions satisfies energy consumption requirements, when combined, the system uses more energy than the requirements allow. The architects learn about this conflict very quickly after making the decisions, which prevents follow-on work from having to be redone or thrown away. The paper conducts a controlled experiment with 90 software architects in a graduate program and finds that architects who use FLAME design more efficiently, produce higher-quality designs, and repair conflicts faster.
Brun's prior work on collaborative software engineering focused on code-level, as opposed to design-level, collaboration, and was awarded a 2013 IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering Spotlight Paper recognition for the paper, Early Detection of Collaboration Conflicts and Risks, and a 2011 ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Award for the paper, Proactive Detection of Collaboration Conflicts. Both papers were co-authored by Brun, Reid Holmes, Michael D. Ernst, and David Notkin.