Scaling a Dataflow Testing Methodology to the Multiparadigm World of Commercial Spreadsheets,
M. Fisher II, G. Rothermel, T. Creelan, and M. Burnett,
Proceedings of the 17th IEEE International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering,
November 2006, pages 13-22.

Abstract

Spreadsheets are widely used but often contain faults. Thus, in prior work we presented a dataflow testing methodology for use with spreadsheets, which studies have shown can be used cost-effectively by end-user programmers. To date, however, the methodology has been investigated across a limited set of spreadsheet language features. Commercial spreadsheet environments are multiparadigm languages, utilizing features not accommodated by our prior approaches. In addition, most spreadsheets contain large numbers of replicated formulas that severely limit the efficiency of dataflow testing approaches. We show how to handle these two issues with a new dataflow adequacy criterion and automated detection of areas of replicated formulas, and report results of a controlled experiment investigating the feasibility of our approach.