CSCI 5828

Foundations of Software Engineering

Course Location
   1B 28

Course Time
   Tuesday and Thursday
   11:00 AM - 12:15 PM

   What's New (Home)
   Class Schedule
   Student Comments
   Contact Information
   Evaluation Criteria
   Status Reports

What's New Archives
   January, 1999
   February, 1999
   March, 1999

What's New (Archive of March 1999)

Tuesday, March 30, 1999

1:25:03 PM

If you have problems accessing the URL sent by Mike Binkley yesterday, try this one instead: <>. Thanks to Febrien Tambunan for pointing this alternative URL out.

Monday, March 29, 1999

3:13:27 PM

Mike Binkley discovered a useful Petri Net tools for PCs from Aarhus University: <>

12:52:32 PM

Neeraj Arora tested out a Petri Net simulator that he discovered on the Web to model his solution to the cruise control system of HW2. This simulator creates a Java applet that can be viewed at the following URL:


Warning: This applet required that I allocate 30 MB of memory to my Web browser before I got it to run!

The original Petri Net tool can be found at:


Sunday, March 28, 1999

9:43:19 PM

Lecture 24 is now available.

Saturday, March 27, 1999

3:41:17 PM

Lecture 23 is now available.

10:35:18 AM

We now have a PDF version of the reading for Homework 3. Many thanks to Febrien Tambunan for scanning the document in and using Acrobat Capture to create the PDF file!

Thursday, March 25, 1999

3:04:34 PM

Homework 4 is now available. This will be your last homework assignment for the class.

2:51:02 PM

Lectures 21 and 22 are now available. The class schedule has also been updated.

2:50:30 PM

Homework 2 Status Report has been updated (again).

Wednesday, March 24, 1999

1:46:25 PM

Homework 2 Status Report has been updated. I believe I'm still missing six assignments.

Tuesday, March 23, 1999

8:58:19 PM

Hi. I was just informed that a student has the power to check out an issue of a journal for two days from the Math library. While we cannot prevent students from outside the class checking out an issue of the ACM Transactions on Software Engineering, I would hope that no student of this class will check out the copy of the journal that contains the article for HW 3 for two days.

Doing this would be unfair to your classmates. You should locate the journal, photocopy the article, and return the journal to its proper location.

I have also placed the article on reserve, so you can retrieve it (for two-hours max) from the Math librarians, photocopy it, and return it. The idea is that we need the article available for the entire class to access it and copy it for the assignment.

Hopefully this announcement was unnecessary, but I decided to be proactive in this instance, rather than reactive. I have posted this announcement on the class newsgroup as well.

P.S. Several CATECS students have asked how they might retrieve the article. My main suggestion is to contact a local university and check to see if their library carries the ACM TSE journal, and then swing by to copy it, or see if they have a service where they can copy it and send it to you.

Thursday, March 18, 1999

2:48:15 PM

Homework 3 is now available.

Wednesday, March 17, 1999

1:10:12 PM

Lecture 20 is now available.

12:06:37 AM

Homework 2 Status Report is now available.

Tuesday, March 16, 1999

11:07:47 PM

The paper for Homework 3 is now available in the Math library on reserve. I put the paper on a two-hour return, which means that you should really just check it out to copy it and then return it.

11:05:31 PM

In other Open Source news, there is a new book out called Open Sources, that contains a collection of essays from some of the "big names" in the Open Source world. I ordered my copy from Amazon and should receive it in a few days.

4:35:27 PM

Open Source Announcement: Apple Computer has made the foundation of its new server operating system (Mac OS Ten Server) open-source. Check out this link for the press release and this page contains links to related material.

3:59:27 PM

I have posted a Homework 1 Rant. If you have trouble with people "letting their hair down", then please do not click on that link!

2:17:38 PM

Homework 2 Deadline for CATECS students extended: I am extending the deadline for CATECS students for Homework 2 to next Tuesday. Several students have not yet received the tapes for the Petri Net lectures and thus cannot do the Petri Net part of the homework! For those students who have not yet received their tapes, please let me know when you get them. Also, please bear with me as I learn the "tricks of the trade" of teaching a CATECS course.

Because of these problems, I will also push back the due date for Homework 3 for CATECS students to its standard one-week delay. Yesterday, I announced that Homework 3 (to be posted on thursday) will have the same due date for both in-class and CATECS students. The one lesson I learned from this HW2 fiasco, is that people don't seem to notice class announcements made on the website...I'm not sure why.

Monday, March 15, 1999

6:55:54 PM

Homework 1 Status Report is now available.

5:50:10 PM

Heads Up: For homework 3, you will need to get a copy of the following paper: David Rosenblum. A Practical Approach to Programming with Assertions. In IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, 21 (1):19-31, January 1995. The library in the Math building has this journal available. I will be assigning homework 3 on thursday and it will be due on April 1st for both in-class and CATECS students.

5:45:33 PM

Lecture 19 is now available.

Saturday, March 13, 1999

10:11:08 PM

CATECS Announcement: I forgot to announce that the studio experienced a glitch at the beginning of Lecture 18 (the one taped last thursday). As a result of that glitch, they missed the first seven minutes of audio. If you have questions about those first seven minutes, please send them to me via e-mail. Sorry for the problem.

9:03:56 AM

Petri Nets: Nathan Ryan has discovered several good resources concerning Petri Nets. Check out <>. A good classification of Petri Nets can also be found at <>

Homework 2: On homework 2, you should only use the basic Petri Net model. Do not use the high-level nets that I discussed on Thursday. Also, the due date for CATECS students is next Thursday, the 19th. I had to reduce the time of the assignment for CATECS students because of Spring Break.

Wednesday, March 10, 1999

12:26:10 AM

Lecture 18 is now available.

Monday, March 8, 1999

6:09:08 PM

Lecture 17 is now available. Also, the Fred Brooks Status Report has been updated.

10:59:22 AM

Homework 2 update: Homework 2 has been updated. Be sure to check out the third paragraph of the introduction and the updated description of the Accelerator input. Also, a new hint has been added.

Saturday, March 6, 1999

7:58:30 PM

Common Errors: With respect to the papers, there are several grammatical errors that I've seen over and over again. I thought I would highlight a few:

It's Brooks's book, not Brooks' book! See this style guide for confirmation. You leave off the "s" when the noun is plural, i.e. the teams' league, the players' ball, etc.

Spell out contractions in formal papers. i.e., say could not rather than couldn't, do not rather than don't.

7:02:22 PM

Fred Brooks Status Report: I've been working on your Fred Brooks papers. While I have a ways to go, at least progress is being made. You can now check on my current status by looking at the Fred Brooks Status Report. Please check the report for errors. In particular, I have listed names in the following format: Family Name, Given Name. If I have your name in the wrong order, please let me know. Also, if your status is Not Received that means I don't have a paper for you...please contact me if that's wrong. Finally, please contact me if you don't see your name listed. Thanks! (P.S. Don't mail me asking for your grade...I will ignore all such messages!)

Thursday, March 4, 1999

9:11:21 AM

Lecture 16 is now available. Sorry for the delay! See you in class!

8:11:10 AM

Homework 2: Homework 2 is now available. The assignment asks you to specify a system using Finite State Machines and Petri Nets. Work on the FSM portion of the assignment now, and we will discuss Petri Nets next week. The assignment will be due at the start of Lecture 19 (Lecture 20 for CATECS students).

Wednesday, March 3, 1999

7:43:57 AM

I have posted a set of example project proposals on the website and the newsgroup. Check out CSCI 5828 Project Ideas for more details.

Tuesday, March 2, 1999

9:32:36 AM

Homework 1 has been updated again. Yesterday's posting had a cosmetic glitch in which the biconditional symbols (<->) were not showing up. You could see them if you did a "View Source" command, but not otherwise...

Monday, March 1, 1999

10:50:54 AM

Homework 1 Update: Okay, I have identified the problem with Homework 1 and know how to fix it. Thanks very much to all of the students who wrote in with suggestions on the nature of the problem and how to fix it. My apologies to those students who have been banging their head on solving this problem when it turns out one of the assumptions was stated incorrectly.

Please see Homework 1 for the corrected assignment.

© Ken Anderson, 1999.
Last Updated: 8/16/00; 2:45:51 PM