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A software inspection process definition language and prototype support tool

Macdonald, F. and Miller, J. (1997) A software inspection process definition language and prototype support tool. Software Testing, Verification and Reliability, 7 (2). pp. 99-128. ISSN 0960-0833

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Abstract

Software inspection is a widely used method for finding defects in all types of software development documents. Many process variations exist, each designed for use under certain circumstances or to address some perceived deficiency in other methods. A desirable attribute of inspection is rigour, allowing the use of historical data to predict future performance and to suggest process improvements. Recent work in tool support for inspection is designed to tackle the issue of enforcing rigorous inspection, but these tools concentrate on enforcing a single, usually proprietary, method. This paper investigates existing inspection methods and derives a generic inspection process which can be used to describe any of these methods. This process is then used to determine a notation for describing any inspection process, which can consequently be used as input to an inspection support tool, allowing the support of any inspection method. The paper also demonstrates a system which uses the language to provide support for multiple inspection processes, and describes other desirable features of such a tool.