CMU Software Engineering Institute Affirms Bold Vision for Engineering Future Software Systems

For this study, SEI engaged the software engineering community and assembled an advisory board of thought leaders from commercial industry, academia and government, with participation from Microsoft, Google, SpaceX, Lockheed Martin, Boeing , DARPA and others. The council was chaired by Deb Frincke, Associate Laboratory Director for National Security Sciences, Oak Ridge National Laboratory. With their input, the study team worked to create a multi-year research and development vision and roadmap for next-generation software systems engineering.

In the foreword to the study, Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering Heidi Shyu wrote: “Software is an essential, if not central, part of every system in the Department of Defense ( DoD). Our hardware has become more and more programmable and software has become ubiquitous. Therefore, software engineering is a critical enabler for everything we do in DoD. … Therefore, this software engineering technology roadmap is a guide for our research and investment strategy which is vital to our national security. … The DoD will continue to look to the Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute as a leader in improving the state of the art and practices in software engineering. “

This study answers the following questions:

  • How will the software systems of the future be rapidly developed, insured, analyzed and deployed?
  • What are the big open issues and the big challenges that are important?
  • What software engineering research is needed to invent solutions to these challenges?
  • How can we encourage strategic partnerships and collaborations between government, academia and industry?

“As software systems and applications become an integral part of every sector of our economy, this is a critical time to rethink the future of software engineering, and I am delighted that the UTE at CMU is working with its partners to define this paradigm shift. With the breathtaking advancements in artificial intelligence and machine learning, we can create the next generation of societal and global software platforms that are trusted, reliable, safe and secure, ”said Carnegie Mellon University President Farnam Jahanian.

The study identifies areas of research that are critical to enable future systems, provides a roadmap to guide the research efforts of the software engineering community, and launches a call to action for continued investment in research into software engineering to achieve the vision outlined by the research roadmap. .

“Software-based systems must be architected to be more scalable and not static: they will undergo continuous updates and improvements,” said Paul nielsen, Director and CEO, Software Engineering Institute. “Software for our critical infrastructure sectors will be rapidly developed and deployed, increasingly modular and composed of trustworthy components, and even more user-centric than in the past. This is why it is so important to create a national software engineering program to identify which technologies and research area are the most critical to enable our future. “

While software advancements have emerged incrementally and organically across many industries and led to breakthroughs unimaginable 20 years ago, they do not deliver the levels of capability, security, quality, and scalability that the future will have. systems will need. As strong software engineering research is conducted, focused effort, continued investment, and improvement in critical software engineering technologies is required; otherwise, surely, next-generation applications might simply not be possible.

“We envision a future where humans and computers are trustworthy collaborators. They work together to quickly deliver the desired ability, as people become more adept at expressing their intention in a way that the computer enables. to learn from experience, “said Anita carleton, Senior Author and Director of the Software Solutions Division at SEI. “These software-intensive systems will require the software engineering community to create new development and architectural approaches that not only take into account size and complexity, but also allow the predictable use of new computational models such as than AI and quantum components. “

To read the full results, recommendations and roadmap for future research and investment, download Designing the Future of Software Engineering: A National Program for Software Engineering Research and Development at

About Carnegie Mellon University Institute of Software Engineering
The Software Engineering Institute (SEI) is a federally funded research and development center sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense and operated by Carnegie Mellon University. UTE works with organizations to make measurable improvements to their software engineering capabilities by providing technical leadership to advance the practice of software engineering. SEI’s CERT division is the world’s leading trusted authority dedicated to improving the security and resilience of IT systems and networks and a national asset in cybersecurity. For more information, visit the SEI website at

THE SOURCE Carnegie Mellon University Institute of Software Engineering (SEI)

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Gordon K. Morehouse