The 3nd edition of the Human-Oriented Formal Methods (HOFM) workshop will be held in conjunction with the Software Technologies: Applications and Foundations (STAF), a federation of leading conferences on software technologies.
The 1st edition of the workshop and the 2nd edition of the workshop were held in conjunction with the International Conference on Software Engineering and Formal Methods (SEFM). 14th International Conference on Software Engineering and Formal Methods, SEFM 2016, is a part of STAF this year.
While designing and applying formal methods, computer scientists have dominantly focused on two factors, only: firstly, the method must be precise and sound and secondly, it must be mathematically concise and aesthetic. Other important characteristics such as simplicity, learnability, readability, memorability, ease of use and communication or, even support for integrating tools into larger development tool chains are ignored too often. These nonfunctional properties, however, are key attributes of usability and user satisfaction. If usability is compromised, methods are not fit for the purpose of documenting, reproducing and communicating key design and realization decisions, or analysis results, especially when these need to communicate or mediate between expertise in different disciplines, different tool chains or across technological or organizational boundaries. For these reasons, many engineers and practitioners largely reject formal methods and formal specification languages as “too hard to understand and use in practice” while admitting that they are powerful and precise.
With increasing computing power and its consequent automation capabilities, the research and development community however is slowly but definitely focusing on usability in combination with automation. Moreover practitioners across numerous domains are increasingly interested in formal domain-specific modelling, simulation and validation, whether in application areas of energy, robotics, health, biology, climate and sustainable development, or, for specific technologies of importance such as data analytics and user interface specification for an exponentially growing number of hand-held or wearable devices.
While there are many applications of formal methods to analyze human-machine interaction and to construct user interfaces, the field of application of human factors to the analysis and to the optimization of formal methods area is almost unexplored.
This workshop aims to bring together researchers, engineers and practitioners from academia and industry to baseline the state of the art in this increasingly important domain. It also aims to develop a future vision and roadmap of usability and automation, focusing especially on readability and ease of use.
HOFM 2016 will be held as a one-day workshop in Vienna, Austria in July 2016.
HOFM 2016 will consist of an invited talk, paper presentations (including questions-answers followed by an open discussions) and work sessions at the end of the day. Each presenter will be asked to present their position, posing the most important questions and raising relevant issues closely related to their research interest and expertise. The workshop will be highly interactive and focused on the sharing of ideas and issues.