Constructive tool design for formal languages : from semantics to executing models

L.J. Bokhoven, van

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    Embedded, distributed, real-time, electronic systems are becoming more and more dominant in our lives. Hidden in cars, televisions, mp3-players, mobile phones and other appliances, these hardware/software systems influence our daily activities. Their design can be a huge effort and has to be carried out by engineers in a limited amount of time. Computer-aided modelling and design automation shorten the design cycle of these systems enabling companies to deliver their products sooner than their competitors. The design process is divided into different levels of abstraction, starting with a vague product idea (abstract) and ending up with a concrete description ready for implementation. Recently, research has started to focus on the system level, being a promising new area at which the product design could start. This dissertation develops a constructive approach to building tools for system-level design/description/modelling/specification languages, and shows the applicability of this method to the system-level language POOSL (Parallel Object-Oriented Specification Language). The formal semantics of this language is redefined and partly redeveloped, adding probabilistic features, real-time, inheritance, concurrency within processes, dynamic ports and atomic (indivisible) expressions, making the language suitable for performance analysis/modelling. The semantics is two-layered, using a probabilistic denotational semantics for stating the meaning of POOSL’s data layer, and using a probabilistic structural operational semantics for the process layer and architecture layer. The constructive approach has yielded the system-level simulation tool rotalumis, capable of executing large industrial designs, which has been demonstrated by two successful case studies—an ATM-packet switch (in conjunction with IBM Research at Z¨urich) and a packet routing switch for the Internet (in association with Alcatel/Bell at Antwerp). The more generally applicable optimisations of the execution engine (rotalumis) and the decisions taken in its design are discussed in full detail. Prototyping, where the system-level model functions as a part of the prototype implementation of the designed product, is supported by rotalumis-rt, a real-time variant of the execution engine. The viability of prototyping is shown by a case study of a learning infrared remote control, partially realised in hardware and completed with a system-level model. Keywords formal languages / formal specification / modelling languages / systemlevel design / embedded systems / real-time systems / performance analysis / discrete event simulation / probabilistic process algebra / design automation / prototyping / simulation tool.
    Originele taal-2Engels
    KwalificatieDoctor in de Filosofie
    Toekennende instantie
    • Electrical Engineering
    Begeleider(s)/adviseur
    • Stevens, M.P.J., Promotor
    • Rooda, Koos, Promotor
    • Voeten, Jeroen P.M., Co-Promotor
    Datum van toekenning28 nov 2002
    Plaats van publicatieEindhoven
    Uitgever
    Gedrukte ISBN's90-386-1960-X
    DOI's
    StatusGepubliceerd - 2002

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