Specification of User Interface for Safety-Critical Systems

Author:Elder, Matthew, Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of Virginia

Safe operation of a safety-critical computer system depends on appropriate humancomputer interaction, effected through the user interface. Thus, specification of the user interface is a key task in the development of such a system. This thesis presents a comprehensive, structured approach to formally specifying user interfaces for safetycritical systems. Based on a view of an interface as comprising three levels, the approach decomposes the user interface into multiple components: semantic, syntactic, and lexical, respectively addressing application function, dialogue control, and presentation. Each component utilizes a formal notation appropriate to its level, then these component specifications are integrated systematically. This approach promotes a modularization that enables prototyping and change at each level and validation of user input, as well as enabling a correspondence between specification and implementation architectures that facilitates software development and verification of the implementation. Feasibility of this specification method was demonstrated using two case studies involving safety - critica1 systems: phe Magnetic Stereotaxis System (MSS) and the University of Virginia Reactor (UVAR).
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Source Citation:

Elder, Matthew. "Specification of User Interface for Safety-Critical Systems." University of Virginia Dept. of Computer Science Tech Report (1995).

University of Virginia, Department of Computer Science
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