Diploma Thesis DIP-3224

BibliographyZitzelsberger, Sebastian: Fehlererkennung in Spreadsheets.
University of Stuttgart, Faculty of Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, and Information Technology, Diploma Thesis No. 3224 (2012).
96 pages, german.
CR-SchemaH.4.1 (Office Automation)
D.2.4 (Software Engineering Software/Program Verification)

Because of their enormous flexibility, spreadheets play an essential role in business today. However, there is evidence that many spreadsheets contain serious errors, some of which have already caused severe consequences for certain enterprises. Nevertheless, spreadsheet risks are hardly perceived in practice and it is common to use untested spreadsheets. Commercial tools that offer checks for spreadsheets do exist, but they are flawed with conceptual limitations, which strongly reduce their merits.

This paper proposes the concept of an inspection-facility for spreadsheets, laying the technical foundation to check spreadsheets for errors with statical and dynamic means. The implementation of this concept is carried out through the extendable Java-framework Speadsheet Inspection Framework (SIF), which enables the creation of testing centers for spreadsheets. The realisation of SIF's first stage in this work makes it possible to execute configurable static tests that check spreadsheets for indiviudal policies. The checking of the three policy rules Constants In Formulas, Reading Direction and Formula Complexity has benn implemented with the use of SIF and their application can be demonstrated by using the prototypical Example Testing Center (ETC).

The subsequent evalution of ETC with operational spreadsheets has shown that similiar results to those of the commercial tools Spreadsheet Professional and Rainbow Analyst could be achieved. However, ETC is not afflicted with the conceptual limitations of existing tools, because it is based on the inspection-facility.

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Department(s)University of Stuttgart, Institute of Software Technology, Software Engineering
Superviser(s)Kulesz, Daniel
Entry dateMay 8, 2012
   Publ. Computer Science