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How come I have to do all this extra work?

John Day

John Day

Posted May 6, 2011

Somebody at Hella was complaining to somebody at IBM about having to do extra work.

Automotive application developers at Hella use tools from IBM Rational Software, including DOORS for requirements management and Rhapsody for modeling. They also use software from INCHRON GmbH for analysis and validation of real-time behavior, and the problem was having to re-enter in INCHRON information that already resided in IBM Rational. If the tools were integrated, that extra work would go away – and now they are, and it has.

Sometimes the complaint department listens. IBM integrated INCHRON with Rhapsody and is now reselling INCHRON. Hella and Continental are among the first automotive application developers to use the combined package, which lets embedded systems developers model, simulate, and analyze the real-time behavior of a system, generate code for various target systems, and link to other development management activities, such as requirements definition, analysis and implementation, or configuration management.

“With the integration of INCHRON tools and the IBM Rational software platform, we can now use an integrated model-driven engineering approach not only for electrical systems and electronic control unit design, but also for timing and performance analysis,” says Dr. Thorsten Molt, leader of Processes, Methods and Tools for Hella’s electronic business unit. “This helps us avoid duplicated efforts, save time and reduce cost.”

It’s not just saving a few minutes here or there. “Change requests from customers are normal routine in the project business,” says Andreas Wolfram at Continental Automotive GmbH. “With the usage of the INCHRON tools, the feasibility of making changes can now be analyzed in one-third of the usual time. “This saves time and money, allows fast feedback to the customer and provides more confidence in the modified system. The integration in our IBM tool chain represents further efficiency gains.”

Anything that saves time without sacrificing quality is a benefit.

DOORS, Hella, Continental Automotive, INCHRON GmbH, IBM Rational Systems, IBM Rhapsody

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John DayJohn Day recently launched John Day’s Automotive Electronics News ( to provide news and feature coverage of the automotive electronics industry. Earlier he wrote for Auto Electronics magazine, Auto E-lectronics, EE Times, and other business and engineering publications. Visit John Day

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