Machine Learning In Software Testing

Dec 25, 2019 1:23:18 PM | by Avanish Pandey

 

Importance Of ML In Software Testing

Introduction

Change in time has also brought the software testing to an advance level. It has come in existence through the machine learning used for validating new software and applications. Machine learning is a process of reading earlier data for a better understanding and decision making for current and future problems. It contains mathematical algorithms that can change according to the knowledge of the data and produce an answer that is closest to the accurate.

Deep Learning

A form of artificial intelligence, the neural network that imitates the functionality of the human brain is part of deep learning. However, Genetic algorithms and rule-based systems can also be used in deep learning. Yet, mostly there is the usage of neural networks as technology in deep learning systems.

Deep learning, a type of machine learning differs from traditional machine learning algorithms. Being highly convoluted it is much more complicated. Mostly used in collection, analysis and interpretation of data by data scientists makes the deep learning process quick. Since it imitates a human brain by gaining knowledge, it is a great way to automate predictive analysis.

Machine Learning

Machine learning is a great way to check for the common errors and bugs which are recurring that can risk software stability in the long run. It helps in the prediction and evaluation of the software where the quality of the software is the priority. Besides these, it benefits the quality of the software through:

  • Predicting the errors in the software while considering the previous testing.
  • Improving testing efficiency by learning from the results of the previous testing.
  • Use of neural networks to learn from Real-time user actions and improving the test quality and relevancy.

Machine learning begins the software to run and then it applies the process until it does not reach the expected output. Such as, in gaming software, machine learning applies its algorithms and tries to cross a stage of the game. It fails several times. Yet, after many attempts, it passes that stage. Next layer of network uses the results of previous algorithms applied. Thus, it tries to learn from the application of algorithms on the data available and uses it for other data. This improves the quality of software testing. And, it also helps in maintaining the results data with the software. In other words, it does imitate the human brain and its functioning.

Machine learning has various pros and cons in it:

Pros and Cons of machine learning


Types of Machine Learning

The definition of Machine Learning does not limit its ambit. It differs on the basis of algorithms used and is applicable in different ways for Software Testing:

Supervised Learning

When the machine is fed with the instructions for the use of classified data, it is supervised learning. The Machine learns and uses it for the new data through the previous learning from the classified data. There is further categorization of models:

  • Regression: Numerical predictions.
  • Classification: Predicts or bifurcates data in different class.

Unsupervised Learning

Opposing the supervised learning, the algorithm is applied to the provided data without feeding any previous data or learnings. The algorithm bifurcates the data based on its differentiation applicable to the given information. This learning has also two categories:

  • Cluster: This helps in bifurcating the data based on similarity.
  • Association: This type of algorithm analyses how the interrelation between the data.

Reinforcement Learning

The algorithm in reinforcement learning makes the machine, learn based on its knowledge.

Test Scenario Mining with machine learning

This helps in collecting errors in the data and is applicable where there is a likelihood of an error happening because of it. It is useful as it helps in detecting the bugs or errors at the initial stage.

Test Suite Optimizer using machine learning

Test suite optimizer is an algorithm that reduces the data for testing. As it eliminates the data which is not required for testing.

All these different algorithms are applicable in Software testing as the applications and the software differs based on specific functions.

Deep Learning and Neural Network with Machine Learning

Deep Learning is a process where the hierarchy of algorithms are applied to software’s input and learns through the results of such an application. These algorithms are applied repeatedly to the point where the output or the result has reached the level of accuracy desired. Since there are numerous processing layers through which the is passing of data takes place, it leads to the name of learning to be deep.

For reaching the desired level of accuracy, the program requires training data and processing. These were not available until the introduction of big data and cloud computing. This program can create speculative models from an immense amount of unlabelled and unstructured data.

Neural Network

An advanced level of the neural algorithm is known as artificial neural networks. Deep learning may be referred to as deep neural learning or networking. Neural Network has the following types:

  • Recurrent
  • Convolutional
  • Artificial
  • Feedforward

The neural network is the subset of Deep Learning and, deep learning is the subset of Machine Learning. Deep learning is a different type of machine learning because of the way, it provides solutions for the problems. Software Testing always requires a solution to different problems. And, a person can't evaluate and classify the huge amount of data (big data) available. However, it is achievable through machine learning in a highly efficient manner. It provides a benefit that it keeps data of the previous testing and learns through the experience. Thus, it helps in analyzing the common errors occurring time and again in the software and applications. This makes predicting the risk or failure before it happens, and as a result, it reduces the cost of fixing it.

Conclusion

Machine Learning has to take improve Software testing. It is useful for the software testing as it keeps a record of the previously run tests and maintains a memory which helps identify common errors and bugs. It has deep learning as one of its type, which has its subset, namely Neural Network.  In general, for an immense amount of data, the machine learning uses a neural network which is frequent. Supervised learning helps in data bifurcation and making the testing process easier.

Although, machine learning in software testing is not as easy as it seems. The person using it should have good knowledge of the code and how the algorithms work. While using neural networks, the process becomes much more difficult because of the continuous trial and error process. Because, if the result does not match the expected output then, the process begins from the first stage, which will increase the costing highly. Apart from this, machine learning has several benefits. It keeps track of software tests used previously. After that, we'll apply the improved algorithms to upcoming tests.

There are other pros and cons as well. Yet, Machine learning in Software Testing is an important tool and helpful for the tester. Of course, provided, the tester has the expertise to handle it.

Tags: neural networks, Artificial Intelligence, machine learning

Avanish Pandey

Written by Avanish Pandey

Avanish Pandey is the 1st and current CEO of Astaqc Consulting. Before joining as CEO of Astaqc, he was a Manager and Sr. Quality Assurance Engineer handling a team of QA's. Avanish was Born and raised in Faridabad, a city and district in Haryana, NCR region of Delhi and he received a bachelor's degree in Computer Science from the MDU.

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