Applying patterns in embedded systems design for managing quality attributes and their trade-offs

Feitosa, D., 2019, [Groningen]: University of Groningen. 261 p.

Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)Academic

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Embedded systems comprise one of the most important types of software-intensive systems, as they are pervasive and used in daily life more than any other type, e.g., in cars or in electrical appliances. When these systems operate under hard constraints, the violation of which can lead to catastrophic events, the system is classified as a critical embedded system (CES). The quality attributes related to these hard constraints are named critical quality attributes (CQAs). For example, the performance of the software for cruise-control or self-driving in a car are critical as they can potentially relate to harming human lives.

Despite the growing body of knowledge on engineering CESs, there is still a lack of approaches that can support its design, while managing CQAs and their trade-offs with noncritical ones (e.g., maintainability and reusability). To address this gap, the state-of-research and practice on designing CES and managing quality trade-offs were explored, approaches to improve its design identified, and the merit of these approaches empirically investigated.

When designing software, one common approach is to organize its components according to well-known structures, named design patterns. However, these patterns may be avoided in some classes of systems such as CES, as they are sometimes associated with the detriment of CQAs. In short, the findings reported in the thesis suggest that, when applicable, design patterns can promote CQAs while supporting the management of trade-offs. The thesis also reports on a phenomena, namely pattern grime, and factors that can influence the extent of the observed benefits.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
  • Avgeriou, Paris, Supervisor
  • Nakagawa, Elisa, Supervisor
  • Ampatzoglou, Apostolos, Co-supervisor
  • Guéhéneuc, Y.G., Assessment committee, External person
  • Izurieta, Clemente, Assessment committee, External person
  • Telea, Alexandru, Assessment committee
Award date25-Jan-2019
Place of Publication[Groningen]
Print ISBNs978-94-034-1375-4
Electronic ISBNs978-94-034-1374-7
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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