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ITEA announces "Technology Roadmap on Software Intensive Systems"

Munich, Germany, March 14, 2001

Note: This press release is also available in German and French.

ITEA Roadmap edition 1 press release word-document - 59 kB


Co-operative European Efforts for Embedded Software


European R&D Programme publishes plan for future work in field of Software Intensive Systems


Information Technology for European Advancement (ITEA) has published a white paper to strengthen European software intensive systems. This "Technology Roadmap on Software Intensive Systems" is a look into the future of software intensive systems in Europe, and shows how ITEA will continue to build co-operation between industry research and academic institutes in order to strengthen European industry by offering leadership in the development of embedded software.


The detailed scenarios within the 140-page document describe a futuristic vision for embedded software, and related software technologies. Within the document, ITEA elaborates on three major application domains: home, enterprise and mobile use. Two further domains are also explored: intermediation services and infrastructures as well as systems engineering. The document is intended for software researchers, decision and policy makers.


A software intensive system is a term that describes groups of products and components that are controlled by, and interact with the world, through software. The software is embedded within the electronics of each product as firmware as read only memory (ROM), or programmable ROMs (PROMS). Examples of products in which functionality is facilitated and controlled in this way include mobile phones, personal organisers, remote control handsets, chip cards, washing machines, radios and aircraft control systems. The importance of this invisible, embedded, software cannot be overstated and Europe leads in many of its application areas.


For European industry, ITEA’s Roadmap will become a memorandum of understanding and a baseline for the future development of software intensive systems. It presents an overview of developments and challenges for software intensive systems – from timely production to quality control and from standardisation to networking. The paper identifies options for cross-industry development in common platforms and will help to raise overall productivity.


The roadmap was formally launched on 14 March 2001, at the DATE1 conference in Munich. Speaking at the event ITEA Chairman, Paul Mehring, said "The Technology Roadmap for software intensive systems underpins ITEA’s philosophy that an industry-driven multinational strategic programme is effective and is rewarded with increased European competitiveness". He continued "we take the lead in the development of software intensive systems for European industry."


During the road-mapping process, about 120 technologies have been addressed as common technologies for the application scenarios, which show that our technological environment will become more networked, more autonomous and increasingly self-organising. Appliances will ‘play’ together, embedded software agents, which will co-ordinate our calendars and travel plans, will make technology safe and user-friendly. Data content volume will rise faster than bandwidth capacity transporting it. Therefore, there will be increasing need for new compression algorithms, such as MPEG 4. Networks will link us, ad-hoc, to world-wide information systems like the Internet.


Robert J. Galvin, Chairman and CEO of Motorola2 described the function of a roadmap as: "A roadmap is an extended look at the future of a chosen field of inquiry composed from the collective knowledge and imagination of the brightest drivers of change in that field. Roadmaps communicate visions, attract resources from business and government, stimulate investigations and monitor progress. They become the inventory of possibilities for a particular field."


Notes to editors


About ITEA

Information Technology for European Advancement (ITEA) focuses on embedded and distributed software and exploration of related software engineering technologies. It is an industry-driven strategic research and development programme supported by national governments in the Eureka3 framework.


Founding companies include Alcatel, Barco, Bosch, Bull, DaimlerChrysler, Italtel, Nokia, Philips Electronics, Siemens, Thales (formerly Thomson CSF) and Thomson multimedia. These companies are leaders in their own core fields of automotive, telecommunications and mobile communication, consumer electronics and information technology. ITEA is open for partners from research, academia and industry.


A free copy of The Technology Roadmap on Software Intensive Systems is available on request from the ITEA Office or can be downloaded as a pdf file at the ITEA web site:

(1) DATE: Design Automation and Test in Europe, see http://www.date-conference.com
(2) Galvin, Robert (1998), Science Roadmaps, Science, Vol. 280, May 8, p. 803
(3) EUREKA is a Europe-wide network for industrial R&D through which industry and research institutes from 29 European countries and the European Union develop and exploit the technologies crucial to global competitiveness and a better quality of life. See