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Distinguished Lecture

Trustworthy Software Systems

Larry BernsteinIndustry Research ProfessorStevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey

Software system development is too often focused solely on schedule and cost. Sometimes performance and functional technical requirements become an issue. Rarely is trustworthiness considered. Not only must software designers consider how the software will perform they must account for consequences of failures. Trustworthiness encompasses this concern.

Untrustworthy software systems have hurt people. Software-caused aircraft crashes, airline groundings, telephone network outages and internet failures, among others, have killed people and caused severe economic consequences. It is difficult to estimate the considerable extent of loses experienced by individuals and companies that depend on these systems. The issue of system trustworthiness, the subject of this talk, is not well known or understood by the public, the nation's leadership or by many software practioners. Much software engineering focuses only on features and schedule, especially schedule. My view is that a shift is needed. The software engineer must make judgments or tradeoffs among the functions the software provides, the time it will take to produce the software, the cost of producing the software, how easy it is to use and how reliable it is. This talk proposes practical ways to start on the path to Trustworthy Software Systems.

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IEEE Student Chapter