As the world rapidly progresses through the transition from agrarian and industrial to informational societies, the importance of software is becoming increasingly critical. No other branch of engineering or technology can show a comparable increase in demand over the last decades
As our reliance on software as a key component in almost all man-made systems grows, so do the requirements for its trustworthiness with respect to all sorts of critical properties – performance, robustness, safety, and security, to mention a few. These properties of software and systems are governed, designed and measured in terms of quality attributes.
As the complexity of interconnected and interoperating systems increases, so does the demand for approaches and methods to successfully manage the quality attributes of those systems. Over recent decades, concepts from civil engineering have been introduced into software engineering. One such concept is that of architecture, which in many cases has been successfully applied to systems and software. There are diverse opinions as to what architecture actually is, but most practitioners seem to agree that architecture supports engineering by providing an understanding of the key principles that, when implemented, render the system its desired critical properties.
To support formalizing and operationalizing the use of architecture in software and systems engineering, international standards are being developed which codify current “best practice” within these disciplines. Ultimately, these standards will support the creation, description, evaluation and life-cycle management of architectures of software and systems, thus acting as powerful means of achieving the desired levels of quality.
The key-note speaker will, using some illustrative examples, make an effort to support the above claims and in doing so hopefully persuade his audience to consider a personal involvement in the exciting standards development that lies ahead of us.
Johan H. Bendz