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Journals and Conferences
A specification and top-level refinement of a simple mine pump control system, as well as a proof of correctness of the refinement, are presented as an example of the application of a formal method for the development of time-based systems. The overall approach makes use of a refinement calculus for timed systems, similar to the refinement calculi for… (More)
Timed-trace formalisms have emerged as a powerful method for specifying and reasoning about concurrent real-time systems. We present a simple variant which builds methodically on set theory, and is thus suitable for use by programmers with little formal methods experience.
A complete set of algebraic laws is given for Dijkstra's nondeterministic sequential programming language. Iteration and recursion are explained in terms of Scott's domain theory as fixed points of continuous functionals. A calculus analogous to weakest preconditions is suggested as an aid to deriving programs from their specifications.
If a program is developed from a specification in a mathematically rigorous manner, work done in the development can be utilized in the testing of the program. The better understanding afforded by these methods provides a more thorough check on the correct operation of the program under test. This should lead to earlier detection of faults (making it easier… (More)
In the physical sciences and engineering, units of measurement provide a valuable aid to both the exposition and comprehension of physical systems. In addition, they provide an error checking facility comparable to static type checking commonly found with programming languages. It is argued that units of measurement can provide similar benefits in the… (More)
We present a comprehensive refinement calculus for the development of sequential, real-time programs from real-time specifications. A specification may include not only execution time limits, but also requirements on the behaviour of outputs over the duration of the execution of the program. The approach allows refinement steps that separate timing… (More)
Continuous real functions are an important tool in describing the evolution of physical processes through time. Using the theory of topology, this notion of continuity may be generalised to arbitrary data types. This paper demonstrates that (topological) continuity can be a useful tool in describing the evolution of digital processes through time. Several… (More)
Well understood methods exist for developing programs from formal specifications. Not only do such methods offer a precise check that certain sorts of deviations from their specifications are absent from implementations but they can also increase the productivity of the development process by careful use of layers of abstraction and refinement in design.… (More)
The specification notations of VDM and Z are closely related. They both use model-based specification techniques and share a large part of their mathematical notation. However, the approaches taken to writing specifications differ in other, more subtle, ways. We present a comparative case study of VDM and Z for specifying database systems. John Fitzgerald… (More)