Software is becoming an increasingly central component in vehicles. Not so long ago a car had a battery for the lighting and windshield wipers, and that was it. Now a lot of functions have been taken over by software – like the airbags, tailgate, windows and mirrors. The engine itself also contains software. The chance that a software problem lies at the heart of a breakdown is increasing. So there is a strong research focus within computer science at TU/e on software development for the automotive industry.
A lot can be measured
Software in cars enables a lot to be measured. It is now possible to register the driving behavior – and so see who has been where and when – or the speed. The question is how to respond to this? Who has access to the data? Lease companies are keen to know how their lease cars are used. Insurance companies can use the data to raise the premium or give a discount if it is clear that the someone is driving prudently. And should the police be allowed to access the data? One significant risk that must be taken into account is the incidence of a virus or intrusion by hackers. And everything this brings with it.
Tools and methods
The TU/e and industry are focused on answering the following questions: How should the software architecture be designed to be able to cope with the gigantic quantity of logged data, how can we ensure that only the right people can access the data, and how can we safeguard the security?’ TU/e develops the tools and methods to boost the quality and productivity of software.