An Activity Ontology for the Conceptualization of Exploratory Software
Keywords:Exploratory software testing, Formal ontology, Description logic, Web ontology language
Exploratory Software Testing (EST) permits testers to interact with a system based on knowledge, skill, creativity, expertise, inspiration, experience and intuition in order to find bugs/defects while ontology explicitly specifies the terms in a domain and the relationship between them. The limitation of EST experiences to individual testers and the inability to share the tester’s knowledge within the software organisation have resulted in conceptual ambiguities and a low reuse rate of EST knowledge. Therefore, this study develops a formal activity ontology for different EST knowledge in software organisations for uniform vocabulary and knowledge management. The ontology engineering approach was used in modelling the ontology. Elicitation of knowledge for EST was carried out in an experimental test environment using 150 testers. Through the use of Description
Logic, knowledge is transformed through knowledge formalization into a logical form (axioms). A web ontology language was used to implement the logical axioms. The EST ontology was evaluated with formulated competency questions that validated its correctness. It can be used as a reference model in software organisations as well as a knowledge base for software testers. It can also be reused by professionals in the domain of software testing.