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Comparing the applicability of complexity measurements for simulink models during integration testing: an industrial case study

Conference paper
Authors Jan Schröder
Christian Berger
Thomas Herpel
Miroslaw Staron
Published in Proceedings of the Second International Workshop on Software Architecture and Metrics, SAM '15
ISBN 978-1-4673-7076-9
Publisher IEEE
Publication year 2015
Published at External relations
Department of Computer Science and Engineering (GU)
Language en
Keywords Simulink, complexity, hardware in the loop, integration testing, interview study, maintainability, metrics, software validity
Subject categories Software Engineering


Context: Simulink models are used during software integration testing in the automotive domain on hardware in the loop (HIL) rigs. As the amount of software in cars is increasing continuously, the number of Simulink models for control logic and plant models is growing at the same time. Objective: The study aims for investigating the applicability of three approaches for evaluating model complexity in an industrial setting. Additionally, insights on the understanding of maintainability in industry are gathered. Method: Simulink models from two vehicle projects at a German premium car manufacturer are evaluated by applying the following three approaches: Assessing a model's (a) size, (b) structure, and (c) signal routing. Afterwards, an interview study is conducted followed by an on-site workshop in order to validate the findings. Results: The measurements of 65 models resulted in comparable data for the three measurement approaches. Together with the interview studies, conclusions were drawn on how well each approach reflects the experts' opinions. Additionally, it was possible to get insights on maintainability in an industrial setting. Conclusion: By analyzing the results, differences between the three measurement approaches were revealed. The interviews showed that the expert opinion tends to favor the results of the simple size measurements over the measurement including the signal routing.

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