The purpose of this expose is to explain the generic design of a customized communication subsystem. The expose addresses both functional and non-functional aspects. Starting point is a real-time requirement from the application area building automation. We show how this application requirement and some background information about the application area lead to a system architecture, a communication service, a protocol architecture and to the selection, adaptation, and composition of protocol functionalities. The reader will probably be surprised how much effort is necessary in order to implement the innocuous, innocent, inconspicuous looking application requirement. Formal description techniques (FDTs) will be used in all design phases.
A new approach for modelling time that does not rely on the concept of a clock is proposed. In order to establish a notion of time, system behaviour is represented as a joint progression of multiple threads of control, which satisfies a certain set of axioms. We show that the clock-independent time model is related to the well-known concept of a global clock and argue that both approaches establish the same notion of time.
A non-trivial real-time requirement obeying a pattern that can be foundin various instantiations in the application domain building automation, and which is therefore called generic, is investigated in detail. Starting point is a description of a real-time problem in natural language augmented by a diagram, in a style often found in requirements documents. Step by step, this description is made more precise and finally transformed into a surprisingly concise formal specification, written in real-time temporal logic with customized operators. Wereason why this formal specification precisely captures the original description- as far as this is feasible due to the lack of precision of natural language.
A tailored real time temporal logic for specifying requirements of building automation systems is introduced and analyzed. The logic features several new real time operators, which are chosen with regard to the application area. The new operators improve the conciseness and readability of requirements as compared to a general-purpose real time temporal logic. In addition, some of the operators also enhance the expressiveness of the logic. A number of properties of the new operators are presented and proven.
A generic approach to the formal specification of system requirements is presented. It is based on a pool of requirement patterns, which are related to design patterns well-known in object-oriented software development. The application of such patterns enhances the reusability and genericity as well as the intelligibility of the formal requirement specification. The approach is instantiated by a tailored real-time temporal logic and by selecting building automation systems as application domain. With respect to this domain, the pattern discovery and reuse tasks are explained and illustrated, and a set of typical requirement patterns is presented. Finally, the results of a case study where the approach has been applied are summarized.