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ItemOrganization-oriented systems: theory and practiceTIDHAR, GIL ( 1999-02)We investigate the problem of developing a formal language for specifying and reasoning about real-time embedded distributed computer systems. In particular we investigate the problem of developing a theoretical framework for specifying and analyzing different aspects of real-time embedded distributed coordination. In addition to the theoretical framework we also consider the practical aspects of developing real-time embedded distributed systems. (For complete abstract open document)
ItemManaged DC power reticulation systemsMorton, Anthony Bruce ( 1999-11)Electric power engineering, as it applies to low-voltage power reticulation in buildings and industrial sites, is ripe for a ‘paradigm shift’ to bring it properly into the Electronic Age. The conventional alternating-current approach, now over a hundred years old, is increasingly unsatisfactory from the point of view of plant and appliance requirements. Alternative approaches can deliver substantial cost savings, higher efficiencies, power quality improvements, and greater safety. Power reticulation systems in the future can be expected to differ from present systems in two key respects. The first is a greatly increased role for direct current; the second is the augmentation of the power system with a wide range of ‘management’ technologies. Combining these two trends, which can already be observed today, leads to consideration of ‘managed DC’ power reticulation systems, operating from AC bulk supply mains via AC-DC converters.
ItemExploring social aspects of requirements engineering: an ethnographic study of Thai systems analystsThanasankit, Theerasak ( 1999)Requirements engineering has been considered as an important phase for information systemsdevelopment. There has been much evidence, which shows how the lack of understanding ofusers' requirements has led to information systems failure and rejection by clients.Requirements engineering emerged from software engineering focusing on elicitingrequirements and finalising requirements specification for systems analysts to design systems. There has been a focus in requirements engineering research on the technical area. This study focuses on the social dimensions of requirements engineering, which has been poorly understood due to a lack of research in this area. The social dimensions of requirements engineering are broad and cover many areas of social activities. This study focuses on the influences of culture and values on requirements engineering processes and on the tools/techniques employed by systems analysts for requirements engineering. The data collected was from intensive interviews with eight Thai systems analysts. These interviews were transcribed and analysed using the accepted practices of hermeneutics. Culture is learned by members in a society. They learn how to behave to their parents, relatives, peers, and their superiors throughout their development from home, school, and workplace. Thai culture is high in power distance, group focus, emotion and relationship focus, and is characterised by a dislike of uncertain situations. These unique characteristics in Thai culture influence the requirements engineering processes and the use of tools/techniques for requirements engineering. Three important issues emerged from the study. They are a continual evolving of requirements, long decision-making processes, and misconceptions about requirements and of the problem domain. These three issues are shown to be influenced by the process of requirements engineering as practiced by the participant systems analysts. Thai culture and values construct the learning process in Thai society and form the emotional and relationship structures in Thailand. These two unique issues are shown to influence the use of tools/techniques for requirements engineering by the participant systems analysts. This study shows that local culture and values have influenced requirements engineering processes. Therefore, systems analysts need to take social factors into consideration for the best selection and adaptation of existing requirements engineering processes to suit their client's culture, values, and work practices. This study's findings are crucial for multinational information systems consulting organizations, operating in Thailand, to gain a better understanding of Thai culture and its impact on the use of requirements engineering methodologies. The study also assists consulting organisations to better manage requirements engineering processes and understanding implicit factors that create problems during requirements engineering and throughout the information systems development processes.
ItemCommunications subsystem support for multimedia workstationsBarry, Matthew Edmund ( 1993)Multimedia is becoming the buzz word of the 1990s. Personal computers with the capability to display video, reproduce sound and present high resolution graphics are becoming affordable, if not cheap. We present a model for the next generation of these systems: the multimedia workstation. The multimedia workstation's central feature is its ability to communicate at high speed with other computers, not just multimedia workstations, in widely dispersed places. We discuss the expected capabilities of the workstation and the functionality of the networks that will make the workstation possible. Two main types of network to provide interconnection for the multimedia workstation are identified: a heterogeneous network of networks and a homogeneous telecommunications network. The cost of the multimedia workstation suggests that it cannot be designed as simply a video telephone. Instead it must be a versatile work support tool. Video conferencing will be a central facility; but a range of tools to support collaborative work are also needed. The communication requirements of these new applications are used to assess the current generation of communication subsystems. Several areas of weakness are identified. A variety of solutions to the problem areas are suggested, including new operating system paradigms, new protocols, and extensive hardware support for the higher level of communications processing. It is concluded that a combination of the solutions will be required for the multimedia workstation to fulfill its potential.