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SOFTWARE-CSV 2017 : IEEE Software Special Issue on Contextual Variability Modeling


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Submission Deadline Apr 1, 2017

Call For Papers

IEEE SOFTWARE Software special issue on “Contextual Variability Modeling”

Current-day software (-intensive) systems are becoming more context sensitive and increasingly exploit contextual information for handling the diversity of changes in and conditions of their surrounding environment. In specific application domains like automotive, marine and aviation systems, windmill farms, and airport management systems, the timely use of and adaptation to contextual information is critical for the system’s normal operation. Consequently, acquiring, analyzing, modeling and managing contextual information for the plethora of systems that need to react to new contexts and adapt their normal operational mode to those new contexts, is a major concern that requires appropriate software modeling and development techniques.
Moreover, the diversity of scenarios that are driven by changes in the surrounding context, demand software variability solutions to be able to dynamically handle the selection of different alternatives. In particular, the variability to cope with different scenarios and options where a system must select and adapt to new contexts at runtime, introduces an extra level of complexity, as systems need to make runtime decisions depending on varying context conditions. Emerging paradigms such as dynamic software product lines and runtime variability mechanisms play a central role to model and manage the variations of both context and non-context features. Other emerging approaches are context-oriented programming languages, able to specify the behavior of software systems in terms of contextual behavioral adaptations that can be activated or replaced dynamically in order to accommodate the system’s and users’ varying needs.
This special issue of IEEE Software on Contextual Variability Modelling will feature a variety of techniques, approaches, and case studies for modeling and developing contextual information and context-sensitive systems that modify their behavior dynamically according to varying context conditions. We invite contributions related but not limited to:
• Context variability analysis and modeling techniques for context-aware systems;
• Static and dynamic variability approaches dealing with context information;
• Awareness raising of end-users, software engineers and industry for dealing with changes due to contextual variability;
• Reconfiguration, re-binding and dynamic composition strategies for dealing with changing context information in self-adaptive and autonomous systems;
• Dynamic adaptation and human interaction using context knowledge;
• Context variability modeling challenges and solutions in different application domains that rely on contextual information at runtime (e.g., smart health care, intelligent vehicles, robotics and drones, IoT systems, smart cities, etc.), highlighting the strengths, weaknesses and challenges of implementing such systems with context in mind;
• Ontologies for discriminating and disambiguating related context information managing the behavior at runtime;
• Collaborative aspects and feature dependencies for modeling software variability using context information in systems that exchange information in real time;
• Context-oriented programming languages and other solutions for implementing context variability at runtime;
• Security aspects and solutions of dynamic adaptability in safety-critical scenarios.
Guest Editors
• Kim Mens (Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium)
• Rafael Capilla (Rey Juan Carlos University, Spain)
• Thomas Kropf (Robert Bosch Car Multimedia GmbH and University of Tübingen)
• Herman Hartmann (NXP Semiconductors, The Netherlands)

If you plan a submission please let us know sending an email to:

Submission deadline: April 1st, 2017
Publication date: Nov/Dec, 2017

Submission Guidelines
Manuscripts must not exceed 3,000 words including figures and tables, which count for 250 words each. Submissions in excess of these limits may be rejected without refereeing. The articles we deem within the theme and scope will be peer-reviewed and are subject to editing for magazine style, clarity, organization, and space. We reserve the right to edit the title of all submissions. Be sure to include the name of the theme or special issue you are submitting for. Articles should have a practical orientation and be written in a style accessible to practitioners. Overly complex, purely research-oriented or theoretical treatments are not appropriate. Articles should be novel. IEEE Software does not republish material published previously in other venues, including other periodicals and formal conference/workshop proceedings, whether previous publication was in print or in electronic form.

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