Feature Interaction Problem

Feature Interaction Problem

Feature interaction is a software engineering concept. It occurs when the integration of two features would modify the behavior of one or both features.

The term feature is used to denote a unit of functionality of a software application. Similar to many concepts in computer science, the term can be used at different levels of abstraction. For example, the plain old telephone service (POTS) is a telephony application feature at one level, but itself is composed of originating features and terminating features. The originating features may in turn include the provide dial tone feature, digit collection feature and so on.

This definition of feature interaction allows one to focus on certain behavior of the interacting features such as how their response time may be changed given the integration. Many researchers in the field consider problems that arise due to change in the execution behavior of the interacting features. Under that context, the behavior of a feature is defined by its execution flow and output for a given input. In other words, the interaction changes the execution flow and output of the interacting features for a given input.

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