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Code Safety to be key issue at Developers' Conference

17th February 2016
Jordan Mulcare

Organisers of the UK Device Developers' Conference have announced that two key themes of this year's event will be 'code safety' and 'device security', with both topics being the subjects of technical workshops and expert presentations.  These will include an overview of the very latest developments in MISRA C, a programming language widely used for safety critical software and also an introduction to Time Triggered Architectures for safety critical systems.

The UK Device Developers' Conference 2016 is an event for engineers and software developers working in the development of intelligent systems and devices, taking place near Cambridge on the 27th and 28th April. The conference will be co-located with H/WExpo, a conference for hardware developers.

“Intelligent systems are becoming far more complex and more connected, and they are playing an ever increasing role in our lives,” said Richard Blackburn, Conference Manager. “In this respect, being a software developer has become more challenging and carries ever more responsibility. At this year’s Conference we will have several leading experts in this field, sharing their knowledge and experience.”

A half-day MISRA C workshop will offer both an introduction to this popular coding standard, as well as explaining the very latest developments. Several industry experts that work in the field of safety critical and reliable systems, and contribute to the development of the MISRA C Standard, will present the workshop jointly.

“We will be explaining what MISRA compliance means to someone producing code, what it involves and how a developer can support their claim to MISRA compliance,” said Mark James of LDRA. “We will also explore what MISRA compliance means for us as customers and how we verify a claim of compliance.”

Phaedrus Systems, a provider of tools for software development and testing will make a presentation that will discuss the possibility that a fatal system failure could lead to criminal legal proceedings - a hot topic among many safety critical software developers.

“Errors in specifying and developing systems, from an internet kettle to an autonomous vehicle, could have catastrophic, or even fatal consequences,” said Chris Hills, Managing Director of Phaedrus Systems. “When it comes to a court trial, who will they find responsible for the failure? This presentation will look at the tools and techniques that engineers and developers can adopt in order minimise the risk of system failure and protect themselves for the long-term.”

Another workshop at the Conference will focus on designs that need to meet international safety standards and guidelines (such as IEC 61508, ISO 26262, IEC 60730 and DO-178). In this workshop, Dr. Michael J. Pont of SafeTTy Systems will demonstrate how a Time Triggered Architecture approach provides an excellent foundation for safe real-time systems because, during development and after construction, it is easy to model the system and, thereby determine whether all of the key timing requirements have been met. The examples used in this workshop will include automotive and industrial designs, and a household washing machine.

“From aircraft, cars, medical equipment, factory control systems to household appliances, the modern world relies on increasingly complicated embedded software. It’s absolutely essential that engineers, designers and programmers are equipped with the technology and tools that they need to produce safe and reliable systems,” said Michael. “This year’s conference is shaping up to offer a great opportunity for anyone looking to advance their knowledge in this crucial area.”

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