Towards Provably Safe and Secure Systems with Contract-Based Design - ii part

30 May 2024 | Online | 17:00 | Inigo Incer (Caltech - California Institute of Technology) - II part


The task of system design is shared by all engineering disciplines, each coming with its own techniques. In spite of their differences in tools, there is large intersection in their conceptual approach to design. In this talk, we exploit this commonality to take an abstract view of systems and their composition. We understand systems and subsystems in terms of their assume-guarantee specifications, or contracts.

Assume-guarantee contracts are formal specifications that state (i) the assumptions that a design element makes on its environment and (ii) the guarantees it delivers when the environment behaves according to the contract's assumptions. Contracts come with a rich algebra that allows us to carry out several design-relevant tasks: obtaining system-level specifications from component specifications, finding specifications of components that need to be added to a design in order to meet an objective, etc. We will introduce the algebra of contracts and discuss how the various algebraic operations relate to system-design tasks. We will discuss hypercontracts, an extension of assume-guarantee reasoning to support the formal analysis of key security and robustness properties. We will also discuss the application of this methodology and Pacti, a software package that supports system design using contracts, in applications ranging from space-mission design to synthetic biology.

Inigo Incer is a postdoctoral researcher at Caltech, advised by Richard M. Murray. He obtained his PhD from UC Berkeley in 2022 under the guidance of Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli. He is interested in all aspects of cyber-physical systems, emphasizing formal methods and AI that support their compositional design and analysis. Before pursuing a PhD, Inigo was an IC designer in Austin. His work has been supported by the ASEE/NSF eFellows program and the UC Berkeley Chancellor's Fellowship.