The 12th Synchronous Workshop
21-25 November 2005

The 12th Synchronous Workshop was held in Malta from the 21st till the 25th of November 2005. The presentations are available online. Frédéric Boulanger has made available a number of photos taken during the workshop.

Gordon Pace

What is the workshop all about?

Synchronous languages provide a solution to the following problem: "What is the highest level of specification possible for real-time embedded systems while retaining mathematical model properties?" Synchronous reactive systems take the stand that time is divided between a discrete number of non-overlapping, non-interruptible instants. Inside an instant, behaviour propagation follows causality principles. At some point this model can be usefully abstracted by a zero-delay reaction model.

Also, these languages execute concurrent actions synchronously in multi-steps, and have the possibility to test for the absence of an internal action. Simple as these design decisions may seem, they have led to languages with enough expressive power to specify the control of jet engines, nuclear reactors and on-board software. Also, due to their simplicity, their compilers could be proved correct. As a result, the compiled code only contains errors due to wrongly expressed specifications at the source level.

Now that the synchronous approach to designing safety-critical real-time systems has been widely accepted by industrial users, further opportunities arise to extend this approach. There is a growing base of applications that require the robustness stemming from the sound theoretical foundations of the synchronous paradigm. Feedback from a broad user base and the continuously growing complexity of applications still poses new challenges, such as the sound integration of synchronous and asynchronous, discrete and continuous, or event- and time-triggered systems. The seminar proposed here aims to address these challenges, building on a strong and active community and expanding its scope into relevant related fields, by inviting researchers prominent in control theory, distributed systems, and the visualization of complex systems. This seminar builds on the body of knowledge which has been already developed over the previous workshops of this series.

Areas of interest for this seminar include the following:

  • Safety-critical real-time systems
  • Time-triggered architectures
  • Discrete and hybrid systems
  • Synchronous models for control theory
  • Combining synchronous and asynchronous models
  • Formally consistent subsetting of UML
  • High-level hardware modeling and synthesis
  • Compilation and code synthesis for embedded systems
  • Visualisation of complex reactive systems
  • Simulation, verification and testing tools
  • Execution Time Analysis for synchronous programs
  • Industrial experience reports

Previous editions of the workshop

The Synchrone Workshop has been held on an annual basis since 1994. It has been organised in various locations in France, Germany and Spain.