Intelligent Requirement Traceability

An expert system-Solution to traceability problem

Requirement traceability is sub discipline of requirements management. A Requirement traceability problem is around 1995, many solution has proposed for example ‘Rule based System’ for traceability solution, A bug tracking tool for example JIRA has some mechanism to track the requirement from bugs and vice versa. All the solution has some limitations so there is need for intelligent solution I mean ‘An Expert system’ for traceability problem. A proposed expert system will trace the requirement like human do traceability, our proposed solution will be like Google but in Google ranking is based on number of clicks and on other factors also but our expert system will eliminate those functions.


Requirement Traceability mean connecting the things together when we talk about requirement traceability we mean connecting different heterogonous system because Test cases may be uploaded in one system, design specification in other system, Storyboard in other system etc. which  is challenges to traceability problem. We have .Doc, Excel, .MP4, PDF, PPTX files to trace

Classification of requirement traceability.

  1. Forward-To Traceability

Links other documents and business plan to relevant requirements documents

  1. Forward-From Traceability

Links requirements to design and implementation components

  1. Backward-To Traceability

Links design Specifications and implementation components back to requirements

  1. Backward-From Traceability

Links requirements to their sources in other documents or people

Expert system:

Only 2% research work is done on an expert system for traceability problem.

Term based search:

80% traditional tools for example JIRA, SharePoint do Term based searching. In bug tracking tool JIRA and SharePoint portals have term based searches. We can trace the requirements in following way in JIRA tool.

It is done by linking the testing ticket with development tickets and when we are in development ticket link for testing ticket is shown and when we are in testing ticket link of development ticket is shown so we can move back and forth in this way to trace.

Solution to the problem

Traceability is a complex problem and need an intelligent solution, Building an export system can solve our traceability problem.


If Requirement Req001 is related to Req002 and Req002 is related to Req003 then Req001 is also related to Req003.


Req001=> Req002 and Req002=> Req003


Req001=> Req003


Let’s take an example of Requirement “System should have an export button which will export the data from grid and there should be another button for user to view the CS results of students”

Human tracer know following.

CS= Computer Science; System= Software; User=Client

Export is similar to taking out or getting out.

Applying rules and using knowledge, human tracer do their work if we incorporate this kind of intelligent to our expert system software then our traceability problem will be solved.


Requirement traceability problem is not simple, it is complex and require lot of funds to build such a complex system, as companies do cost and benefit analysis, cost is huge then it’s benefits that is the main reason about issue existence, many complex problem are fixed during past. As traceability is laborious and intelligent task so for this an export system is required which can do intelligent tracing.

Future work requires an expert system development which can do traceability like human tracer do. Moving from simple term bases search applying rules to do semantic search and applying reasoning will lead us to expert system development. A developed tool should support all types of files and documents mean any type of document and files should get uploaded with particular repository and when called any document system should return the exact document by applying rules, relationship and reasoning on it.


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