A View from the Top: A Virtual Prototyping Blog


Disciplined System-Level Design

Colonel JessupIt’s the small things in life … there are these moments when out of the blue you get an email and it makes the investment into a recent piece of work instantly worthwhile. In my monthly column at Electronic Design called “Systems to Silicon” my most recent entry asks the question: “Is System-level Design About Discipline?”.

In brief, I am making the point that a “think first implement later” approach is so intuitive and we do learn this in life all the time, but when it comes to actual development projects we are just ignoring the things we learned, think a little bit and then just dive into implementation.

In using Colonel Jessup, Jack Nicholson’s character in “A Few Good Men”, who yells that “we can’t handle the truth”, I cite a couple of examples that system-level design (all the way up to UML) actually works quite well in military projects. So it may turn out to be about discipline after all!

This morning I received a compliment on the article out of the blue from an engineer in thermal engineering. He really liked it, and in his engineering area the same situation holds true. He stated that “the same is true in his experience in the molding of unusual things, with complex interactions of thermal & fluid phenomena on mechanical issues and final product condition (or “quality”).”

Ok, even though it’s Friday, let’s get disciplined then! I am looking forward to more of your comments. The article can be found here.

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