Transactions on Software Engineering

TSE Seeks Editor-in-Chief for 2018-2020 Term

The IEEE Computer Society seeks applicants for the position of editor-in-chief of the IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, serving a three-year term starting 1 January 2018. Prospective candidates are asked to provide a complete curriculum vitae, a brief plan for the publication's future, and a letter of support from their institution or employer (as PDF files) by 1 March 2017. For more information on the search process and to submit application materials, click here or please contact: Kimberly Sperka,

The IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering (TSE) is an archival journal published bimonthly. We are interested in well-defined theoretical results and empirical studies that have potential impact on the construction, analysis, or management of software. Read the full scope of TSE

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From the February 2017 Issue

A Study of Causes and Consequences of Client-Side JavaScript Bugs

By Frolin S. Ocariza Jr., Kartik Bajaj, Karthik Pattabiraman, and Ali Mesbah

Featured article thumbnail imageClient-side JavaScript is widely used in web applications to improve user-interactivity and minimize client-server communications. Unfortunately, JavaScript is known to be error-prone. While prior studies have demonstrated the prevalence of JavaScript faults, no attempts have been made to determine their causes and consequences. The goal of our study is to understand the root causes and impact of JavaScript faults and how the results can impact JavaScript programmers, testers and tool developers. We perform an empirical study of 502 bug reports from 19 bug repositories. The bug reports are thoroughly examined to classify and extract information about each bug' cause (the error) and consequence (the failure and impact). Our results show that the majority (68 percent) of JavaScript faults are DOM-related, meaning they are caused by faulty interactions of the JavaScript code with the Document Object Model (DOM). Further, 80 percent of the highest impact JavaScript faults are DOM-related. Finally, most JavaScript faults originate from programmer mistakes committed in the JavaScript code itself, as opposed to other web application components. These results indicate that JavaScript programmers and testers need tools that can help them reason about the DOM. Additionally, developers can use the error patterns we found to design more powerful static analysis tools for JavaScript.

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