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Testing and Proving: Strange Bedfellows?

Robert Dewar

From: Safety-critical Systems Symposium, 5 - 7 February 2013, Bristol, UK

07 February 2013  Manufacturing channel

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About the presentation

Traditionally, e.g. when using DO-178B, we have relied on structured and formalized testing to assure safety, but the limitations of testing are well known. On the other hand, it is not feasible to use proof techniques for an entire application. That’s partly a limitation of our proving capabilities, but partly fun-damental. For instance we can’t easily prove that the specification itself is correct or that the hardware operates as expected. So we will always be stuck with some testing. This paper discusses how testing and proof are used in practice, and con-siders the issue of how to combine tests and proofs in a single application.

About the speaker

Robert Dewar is an Emeritus Professor of Computer Science at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University. He is past chair of the department, and past associate director of the institute. His research fields include compilers and programming languages, operating systems, and microprocessor architectures. He is also the President of Ada Core Technologies, a company that specializes in providing large scale systems for development of critical systems using Ada technology. Ada Core Technologies provides all its software using Free Software/Open Source licenses. He is an expert in the technical aspects of patent and copyright law, having served as a an expert witness in several US Federal trials.

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