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Software Quality Objectives for Source Code

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Quality assurance for automotive systems can require different types of verification activities throughout the development process.

  • Early verification focuses on evaluating intermediate software builds and removing defects at coding time. This represents an emerging trend because performing verification early in the process can improve overall quality and reduce development time.
  • Post-production verification focuses on evaluating final build quality or finding defect root causes after the product is complete. This is the most common approach to automotive system verification.

Shifting from post-production quality assurance to early verification can require major process and tool changes. To enable incremental adoption of these changes, automotive OEMs and suppliers developed a practical guide, the Software Quality Objectives document.

Software quality objectives covers a variety of techniques and measurements, including gathering code metrics, enforcing coding rules, and proving the absence of run-time errors. The guide also takes into account the origin of the code, its stage in the software life cycle, and the safety aspects of the application. The guide explains how to gradually adapt the code verification process to achieve targeted quality objectives.

Automotive teams are now applying the Software Quality Objective document as a baseline for their own code development and verification process.

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See also: Polyspace code verification products, verification, validation, and test, embedded systems