Simplicity Considered Fundamental to Design for Predictability

Author Wolfgang Halang

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Wolfgang Halang

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Wolfgang Halang. Simplicity Considered Fundamental to Design for Predictability. In Perspectives Workshop: Design of Systems with Predictable Behaviour. Dagstuhl Seminar Proceedings, Volume 3471, pp. 1-6, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2004)


Complexity is the core problem of contemporary information technology, as the artificial complicatedness of its artefacts is exploding Intellectually easy and economically feasible predictability can be achieved by selecting simplicity as fundamental design principle. Predictability of system behaviour is identified as the central concept for the design of real-time and embedded systems, since it essentially implies the other requirements timeliness and dependability holding for them. Practically all dynamic and virtual features aiming to enhance the average performance of computing systems as well as the traditional categories and optimality criteria are found inadequate and are, thus, considered harmful. In mainstream research on scheduling the gap between academic research and reality has grown so wide that research results are doomed to irrelevance. Instead, useful scheduling research ought to employ utmost simplicity as optimality criterion, and strive to minimise software size and complexity. Computing should embrace other disciplines’ notions and technologies of time. Programming and verification methods for safety-related applications are identified on the basis of their simplicity and ergonomic aptitude. It is advocated to utilise the permanent advances in microelectronics to solve long untackled problems and to foster simplicity and predictability by hardware support.
  • Design for predictability
  • simplicity
  • dependability
  • safety
  • real-time


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