Modelling of Software-Intensive Systems 


The course will make extensive use of the object-oriented programming language Python. We will advise you to spend the first few weeks (while there are no MoSIS classes) learning the language.

A useful tutorial can be found at:

The course will be taught
  • 10:45 - 12:30 on Tuesday (lab, but theory during beginning of term) in M.G.04 and PC labs
  • 10:45 - 12:30 on Thursday (theory) in M.G.04


presentation [pdf]

Modelling and Simulation to Tackle Complexity
presentation [pdf] exploring the causes of complexity.

Modelling and Simulation Foundations: Systems Specification
presentation [pdf]
notes [pdf]

Formalisms: Causal Block Diagrams (CBDs)
(old) Blackboard Scribbles.
Topological Sorting and Strong Component algorithms.
Lecture on Algebraic and Discrete-Time CBDs [video].
Lecture on Continuous-Time CBDs [video].
Note: the above are not recordings of this year's class, but rather of an older version of the course, with the same content however.

Formalisms: Petri Nets
Christos G. Cassandras. Discrete Event Systems. Irwin, 1993. Chapters 4, 5. [pdf (MoSIS access only)].
Carl Adam Petri. Kommunikation mit Automaten. 1962. (this is Petri's doctoral dissertation).
Tadao Murata. Petri nets: Properties, analysis and applications. Proceedings of the IEEE, 77(4):541-580, April 1989.
James L. Peterson. Petri Net Theory and the Modeling of Systems. Prentice Hall, 1981.

Formalisms: Statecharts
David Harel. Statecharts: A Visual Formalism for Complex Systems. Science of Computer Programming. Volume 8. 1987. pp. 231 - 274. [pdf].
David Harel. On Visual Formalisms. Communications of the ACM. Volume 31, No. 5. 1988. pp. 514 - 530. [pdf] [pdf (MoSIS access only)].
David Harel and Amnon Naamad, The STATEMATE semantics of statecharts. ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology (TOSEM) Volume 5 , Issue 4 (October 1996) pp.293 - 333. [pdf] [pdf (MoSIS access only)].
D. Harel and M. Politi. Modeling Reactive Systems with Statecharts: The STATEMATE Approach. McGraw-Hill, 1998. (available online).
Michael von der Beeck. A structured operational semantics for UML-statecharts. Software and Systems Modeling. Volume 1, No. 2 pp.130 - 141. December 2002. [pdf].

Formalisms: Event-Scheduling Discrete-Event

Formalisms: Discrete-EVent System Specification (DEVS)

Guest Lecture by Gareth Thomas of The MathWorks on Modelling Complex Systems with MathLab/Simulink

Formalisms: (Forrester) System Dynamics


  1. Checking requirements using Sequence Diagrams and Trace Matches
  2. Causal Block Diagrams (un-timed, discrete-time)
  3. Causal Block Diagrams (continuous-time)
  4. Petri net modelling and analysis of a production system
  5. Statecharts modelling, simulation, synthesis, and testing of a digital watch
  6. DEVS modelling and simulation of Traffic

These assignments will be completed in groups of two students. Your solutions should be submitted to Blackboard. There are two evaluation moments (after assignment 3 and after assignment 6), where you will clarify your solution individually.

Maintained by Hans Vangheluwe. Last Modified: 2013/10/02 14:30:22.