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Volunteers Sought for Software Complexity Study


Researchers in the Software Solutions Division at the Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute (SEI) are seeking volunteers to participate in a study to identify and measure complexity in software models and to evaluate quality, productivity, and modeling tool usage outcomes in the context of complexity. The Effective Reduction of Avoidable Complexity in Embedded Systems (ERACES) Experiment is seeking up to 70 participants from two communities:  

  • computer science students at a college or university
  • industry and government professionals from the software development domain

The call for participation is open now through June 30, 2015. Participants will gain reinforced knowledge of software modeling and a related tool set as well as a better appreciation of the notion of software complexity and the dimensions of avoidable complexity. After the experiment, participants will receive examples of avoidable complexity and actions to better avoid such complexity within their work.

The experiments will be conducted in two phases:

Phase 1 will consist of participants operating under timed test-taking conditions (approximately 2 hours) to evaluate and/or modify specific software models. Participants will remotely log in to participate in the experimental session. Prior to Phase 1, the research team will provide each participant with one day of free training on the use of a software modeling tool called SCADE, by ANSYS, and instructions on how to install it. Each training session will be followed by a single day of confidential exercises as part of the research experiment.

Phase 2 will consist of participants operating under timed test-taking conditions (approximately 4 hours) to develop a software model from a provided problem description.

For more information about the experiment or to volunteer, visit