Evolving an Industrial Software System for 30 Years

Yesterday, I gave the industrial keynote at the Workshop on Managed Software Evolution of the DFG Priority Programme 1593. It was held in conjunction with SE 2013, the german multi-conference on software engineering. Slides will be posted soon.
Abstract: Long-living software systems are a necessity in the industrial automation domain, where automation devices are typically operated for decades. Thus, it is a major challenge to design, implement, and maintain such software-intensive systems. This talk presents the case of an industrial control system called MicroSCADA, which has an evolution history of already more than 30 years. We analyze several technical and organizational factors that contributed to the successful evolution of the system since the 1980s. By this, the talk argues for more empirical research in the area of long-living software systems. The talk concludes with an overview of some recent approaches for sustainable software architectures at ABB Corporate Research.