The Conceptual-Level Approach to Complex System Design

David Lidsky
Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
UC Berkeley

October 31, 1996
Hogan Room, 531 Cory Hall
4:00-5:00 p.m.


The increasing complexity and heterogeneity of current day systems makes early design trade-offs and analysis a necessity. Typically such design exploration is performed at a time that specifications are incomplete or ill defined, and no behavioral or structural descriptions have been formulated. In current day design practices, this level of design abstraction, henceforth called the conceptual-level, is addressed in an ad-hoc fashion without much support from tools or without fully utilizing existing data and models. We believe that in order to design the complex systems of tomorrow (and today) will require that more design energy and tools be focused at this conceptual level. This talk will discuss some of our early ideas and tools for conceptual-level design. The need for a distributed data modeling environment combined with a set of appropriate user interfaces will be discussed. The status of our work as well as areas where we believe there can be some cross-group efforts will also be presented.