Computer systems in vehicles are increasing in number, size, and complexity. In today's vehicles, this can mean tens of millions of lines of software code that must work flawlessly and seamlessly together. Achieving this critical goal is becoming increasingly challenging using current approaches to software development.
NECSIS (Network for the Engineering of Complex Software-Intensive Systems for Automotive Systems) is a research partnership between eight research institutions and three industrial partners. The network is focused on the advancement of a software methodology called Model-Driven Engineering (MDE) that can yield dramatic improvements in software-developer productivity and product quality. In MDE, "models" are simplified representations of complex software designs. MDE reduces the complexity of developing software by focusing on models and their relationships, reflected in the designs, code and documents that developers work with, enabling them to test and verify models even before the code exists. NECSIS will tackle obstacles and develop new MDE capabilities that will lead to the development of the next generation of MDE methods and tools. These advances will help automotive manufacturers to prepare for the complexities they are likely to face as they integrate next-generation components and systems into the vehicles of the future.