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Sun 30 October - Fri 4 November 2016 Amsterdam, Netherlands
Tue 1 Nov 2016 08:30 - 09:15 at Winterthur - Session 1 Chair(s): Michael Pradel, Omer Tripp

Many bugs in JavaScript applications manifest themselves as objects that have incorrect property values when a failure occurs. For this type of error, stack traces and logs are often insufficient for diagnosing problems. In such cases, it is helpful for developers to know the control flow path from the creation of an object to a crashing statement. Such crash paths are useful for understanding where the object originated and whether any properties of the object were corrupted since its creation. We present a feedback-directed instrumentation technique for computing crash paths that allows the instrumentation overhead to be distributed over a crowd of users and to reduce it for users who do not encounter the crash. We implemented our technique in a tool, Crowdie, and evaluated it on 10 real-world issues for which error messages and stack traces are insufficient to isolate the problem. Our results show that feedback-directed instrumentation requires 5% to 25% of the program to be instrumented, that the same crash must be observed 3 to 10 times to discover the crash path, and that feedback-directed instrumentation typically slows down execution by a factor 2x-9x compared to 8x-90x for an approach where applications are fully instrumented.

Frank Tip is a Principal Engineer in the Frontier Computer Science Lab at Samsung Research America in San Jose, California and an Adjunct Professor at the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. Previously, he was a Professor and Cheriton Research Chair in the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo (2012-2014), and a Research Staff Member and Manager at the Software Technology Department at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center (1995-2012). He received his PhD in 1995 from the University of Amsterdam.

Tue 1 Nov

08:30 - 10:00: WODA - Session 1 at Winterthur
Chair(s): Michael Pradel, Omer Tripp
woda2016147798540000008:30 - 09:15
woda2016147798810000009:15 - 10:00