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Exposing Design Flaws in Shared-Clock Systems with TLA+ - Russell Mull

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Published on Sep 17, 2019

Many cyber-physical systems (e.g. Industrial Automation systems, Medical Devices, and Autonomous Vehicles) are designed with the presumption of a reliable shared clock. This is a very risky approach. Shared clocks can drift or even fail, leading to catastrophic results. I will present an approach to modeling shared-clock systems with TLA+ that can expose clock-based failure modes and drift envelopes, allowing the system designer to better understand the system’s failure boundaries. I will also share strategies to constrain the search space, and general experiences from the use of TLA+ for this class of problem.

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