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Today, research in software engineering encompasses a wide range of computer science and engineering disciplines. These include systems and networking technologies, hardware design, programming languages, security, and privacy, to name a few. Microsoft Research actively engages with researchers across these disciplines to advance the state of the art in software engineering applications and tools. The areas of mobile and cloud computing are of particular recent interest, and are where some of the most exciting and innovative work is being done. Today smartphones and cloud services, are being used in complex scenarios pushing the envelope of what software can do. The design of such scenarios introduces challenges unique to this new paradigm.
The Microsoft Research Software Engineering Innovation Foundation (SEIF), a forum for collaboration among software engineers worldwide, presents its annual awards to promote these efforts. The SEIF awards provide seed funding to innovative research in software engineering, recognizing projects that aim to advance the state of art in software engineering. Now in its third year, SEIF is pleased to announce the winners of the SEIF 2012 request for proposals. This year, the awards have focused on the application of software engineering to mobile and cloud computing.
As in past years, SEIF winners are spread across the world—with projects as diverse as their backgrounds. For instance, Harald Gall of the University of Zurich plans to create a collaborative tool that uses Microsoft Team Foundation Server to assess software quality. Mayur Naik of Georgia Tech plans to develop an automated test-generation methodology for mobile apps, doing so by advancing a program analysis technique called dynamic symbolic execution while making heavy use of the Microsoft Z3 automated theorem prover. Arno Puder from San Francisco State University intends to develop a toolkit called XMLVM, which can cross-compile a commercially available Android application to Windows Phone 7. Unusually, we have two awards going to the same institution this year. Alexey Gotsman from IMDEA in Spain will be working on a project to specify and validate memory models for Windows Phone. Mark Marron, also at IMDEA, Spain, will be working on finding and fixing memory usage problems.
These are just a sample of the innovative software engineering projects recognized by this year’s awards. You can read more about them and the rest of the SEIF winners on the SEIF website.
Congratulations to the 2012 winners!
—Arjmand Samuel, Senior Research Program Manager, and Judith Bishop, Director of Computer Science, Microsoft Research Connections