Problem Reduction: a systematic technique for deriving Specifications from Requirements

Rapanotti, Lucia; Hall, Jon G. and Li, Zhi (2006). Problem Reduction: a systematic technique for deriving Specifications from Requirements. Technical Report 2006/02; Department of Computing, The Open University.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.21954/ou.ro.00016053

Abstract

In this paper we explore the notion of problem reduction as a systematic transformation from requirements to specifications. We adopt the notion of problem as a requirement in a real-world context for which a software solution is sought, and view the process of software development as a problem solving process, leading ultimately, and hopefully, to a solution which satisfies the requirement in its context. In this paper, we focus on how a solution specification can be derived from a requirement, and introduce problem reduction as a systematic transformation to achieve this. We reflect on how problem reduction captures requirements engineering practices, express it in the context of Problem Frames and provide a set of rules for its application. The intention of the work is to increase the understanding of the problem solving process as well as to provide techniques to support sound engineering practices.

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