TIMe - The Integrated Method
by Richard Sanders
SINTEF Telecom and Informatics has developed The Integrated Method (TIMe), which is the result of a cooperation with 20 Norwegain industrial companies in the SISU project (1988-96, see http://www.sintef.no/units/informatics/projects/sisu/). TIMe helps master the complexity of real-time system development, and features automatic software production in a variety of computing languages.
TIMe is designed for systems that are reactive, concurrent, real-time, distributed, heterogeneous and complex.
TIMe seeks to achieve the higher process maturity levels. The goal is to enable what we call Property oriented development. This is characterised by:
- better product planning through focus on the early stages of system development, in particular domain analysis and requirements specification
- emphasis on system families, evolution and reuse
- formal expressions of required and provided properties
- quality-by-construction through integration of methods for verification, validation and design synthesis.
The descriptions in TIMe are expressed using a few powerful languages, which are international standards supported by commercial tools:
- Object Modeling Technique (OMT) or Unified Modeling Language (UML) for Object Models in early phases
- Specification and Description Language (SDL) for design of structure and behaviour
- Message Sequence Charts (MSC) for describing interaction.
The TIMe CD contains tutorials on OMT/UML, SDL and MSC, and uses a common system example to exemplify notations, descriptions, types of development processes and the methodology.
Rules and guidelines are provided that help to make high quality descriptions. They are organised in several levels. Some are language specific, some are description specific and some are project activity specific.
Elements of TIMe are used by many Norwegian companies. Industrial users have experienced that TIMe helps their developers:
- get the job done faster
- with better quality
- with better control of progress.
Developers spend time on descriptions that are worthwhile, thus saving time and making development work more enjoyable. For more information see http://www.sintef.no/time .
TIMe is published in an electronic manual available on CD-ROM from SINTEF.
Richard Sanders - SINTEF Telecom and Informatics
Tel: +47 73 59 30 06