Information Technology Restructures Car Electronics 1999-01-0485
In the automotive industry a growing number of mono-functional control units with increasing complexity on one hand and requirements for reduced power con-sumption and mounting space on the other hand are enforcing an architectural change of the car electronics. Computer platforms with a client/server architecture are candidates to reduce the number of control units drastically followed by a reduction of costs, space and better integration possibilities for enhanced func-tionalities as well as additional services. The problem which comes up now if those architectures are coming to the cars is to cope with software complexity and reliability issues under the aspect of continuously evolving hardware infrastructure.
To understand the problems better, the Corporate Engineering within Robert Bosch GmbH has build a multifunctional look-and-feel demonstrator in a first step using a component-based software architecture on a standard PC-platform. Experiences are reported. Therefrom it also has been learned that for cost efficiency in the software development on any hardware architecture, a platform-like Software Process is necessary which allows highly reusability of non-product-related assets and comparably little additional product-specific engineering. Therefore the emerging Product Line Approach Process as a candidate for a future software development process which delivers long lasting stable assets is introduced. The Product Line Process is applied to the automotive domain. First experiences in the Domain Analysis are reported.