Date of Award

2014

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science (PhD)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Computer Science

Advisor

Nilufer Onder

Co-Advisor

Soner Onder

DOI

10.37099/mtu.dc.etds/796

Abstract

Computer simulation programs are essential tools for scientists and engineers to understand a particular system of interest. As expected, the complexity of the software increases with the depth of the model used. In addition to the exigent demands of software engineering, verification of simulation programs is especially challenging because the models represented are complex and ridden with unknowns that will be discovered by developers in an iterative process. To manage such complexity, advanced verification techniques for continually matching the intended model to the implemented model are necessary. Therefore, the main goal of this research work is to design a useful verification and validation framework that is able to identify model representation errors and is applicable to generic simulators.

The framework that was developed and implemented consists of two parts. The first part is First-Order Logic Constraint Specification Language (FOLCSL) that enables users to specify the invariants of a model under consideration. From the first-order logic specification, the FOLCSL translator automatically synthesizes a verification program that reads the event trace generated by a simulator and signals whether all invariants are respected. The second part consists of mining the temporal flow of events using a newly developed representation called State Flow Temporal Analysis Graph (SFTAG). While the first part seeks an assurance of implementation correctness by checking that the model invariants hold, the second part derives an extended model of the implementation and hence enables a deeper understanding of what was implemented. The main application studied in this work is the validation of the timing behavior of micro-architecture simulators. The study includes SFTAGs generated for a wide set of benchmark programs and their analysis using several artificial intelligence algorithms. This work improves the computer architecture research and verification processes as shown by the case studies and experiments that have been conducted.

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