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EDICT® - Making the Complex Understandable


EDICT® is a model-based engineering platform for establishing understandable views of system organization and behavior.  The seamlessly integrated architectural and analytical models give superior insight into the complexity of relationships of system components and services.

As modern systems become progressively more complex, solution providers and integrators are facing increased design, test and certification burdens. The EDICT® Tool Suite reduces this burden by enabling analysis of key system properties (e.g., safety and dependability) throughout the development process.

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Problem: Traditional systems engineering processes are often decoupled and produce disconnected models, documents and certification artifacts, which unnecessarily complicate system design, analysis, verification, validation, maintenance and disposal.

Solution: Performing model-based systems engineering (MBSE) with the EDICT® Tool Suite can help you establish clear views of system organization and behavior.  The seamlessly integrated architectural and analytical models provide superior insight into the complexity of relationships of system components and services.

The EDICT® Tool Suite improves communications among stakeholders, increases your ability to manage complexity, enhances your product quality, helps you capture knowledge and reuse models, and accelerates your ability to learn and apply systems engineering concepts. Ultimately, these benefits produce more robust and cost-effective systems and more efficient and sustainable engineering processes.

Problem: Stakeholders are often neglected after the initial requirements elicitation is finished and the resulting documentation provides insufficient insight into the system for high-level stakeholders.

Solution: The EDICT® Tool Suite integrates views and model results into architecture models accessible to all stakeholders. You can develop models more efficiently, thus simplifying identification of desired properties and evaluation of a system’s capabilities.  By showing stakeholders the architectural views of interest to them, you can ensure their needs will be met by the system.

Problem: Traditionally requirements are managed in a system distinct from the modeling environment, making it difficult to identify disparities and traceability between the system and the requirements and, consequently, to assess the impact of requirement or system changes.

Solution: The EDICT® Tool Suite supports both the requirements development and requirements management processes. Customer needs, use cases and requirements, are represented as architecture models which are easily reviewed by the relevant stakeholders.  The system architecture and derived requirements are captured in the same tool.  With traceability of requirements to functionality and components and to higher-level requirements, you can ensure the customer needs are fully addressed throughout the system life cycle.

Problem: The models of a system are often loosely related by manually constructing traceability matrices or document trees.

Solution: Using the EDICT® Tool Suite, system developers, engineers and architects capture the important properties of the system as models of system architecture and behavior and assess the safety and efficiency of architectural mechanisms employed.  The tool plays an integral role in the overall verification and validation (V&V) process for ensuring dependability, safety and error handling requirements are achieved with traceable artifacts.

Problem: Developing and communicating alternative architectures with stakeholders is difficult without fully coupled models and tradeoff analysis becomes a long, expensive and cumbersome process.

Solution:The EDICT® Tool Suite employ model-driven design techniques with methods to integrate these views and model results into a single architecture model accessible to all system stakeholders. The trade space can be worked more efficiently, and it is easier to identify desired properties and evaluate the ability of a system to deliver them at runtime.

Problem: Many system models are not based on a standard, precise syntax and semantics that provide the ability to model large-scale architectures from many aspects in a single analyzable model that can be incrementally refined, an interface needed to evaluate the effect of change, such as the emergent properties of integration (e.g., safety, schedulability, end-to-end latency, and security), and analysis of the system structure and runtime behavior, complementing functional simulation.

Solution: EDICT® models comply with the Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL), a standard, well-defined, semantically rich open source language which provides the functionality missing from other modeling frameworks. AADL enables a well-defined design and allows for more accurate analyses to be applied to the modeled system.  AADL is an SAE Standard for Model-Based Engineering (AS5506).  Here are some of its many benefits:
  • AADL enables definition of system, hardware, and software architecture
  • AADL provides specialized components with interfaces (not just “blocks”)
  • AADL enables interaction with the execution environment (processor, buses)
  • AADL permits user-defined properties (integrate your own constraints)
  • AADL has extension mechanisms that contribute to more meaningful models of system

In addition, the AADL standard annexes support model features that enable system analysis (e.g., safety, behavior, etc.).

For a system with safety-critical avionics real-time operating systems (RTOS), EDICT can check the model for space and time partitioning compliance to the Avionics Application Standard Software Interface (ARINC 653).

Problem: Traceability of requirements verification to components is often captured in a disparate set of documents or tools separate from the modeling environment.

Solution: In the EDICT Tool Suite, requirements and verification are directly coupled to system models within the same environment.  You can couple your verification process to the modeling and requirements management process to ensure the system has the required performance and functionality.

Problem: Having a plethora of loosely connected models and documentation make certification a monumental task.  High-powered analysis methods are often beyond the reach of the system engineers and require a specialist with the necessary expertise.  After the results are obtained, it is difficult to link them into a system level architecture model and they exist as stand-alone artifacts.  Thus, many certification efforts are time intensive, difficult to cross check, and hero driven.

Solution: You can move away from reliance on purely labor intensive manual analysis of system documentation for certification.  Coupling the models, analysis and documentation with a unified framework in EDICT® will enable you to certify your system with confidence.

Problem: The functionality of MBSE tools can be poorly integrated and difficult to use.

Solution: The EDICT® Tool Suite consists of a core modeling tool with optional extensions.  The core tool, EDICT® Modeler is a flexible framework for modeling elements of systems at all levels of abstraction. EDICT® Modeler enables you to:

  • Create and edit native and custom logical, system and behavior models.
  • Develop and manage requirements and system models in one environment for a single source of truth.
  • Trace related models within and between architectures.
  • Customize aspects of architecture models (i.e. data libraries).
  • Add event sets, event triggers and timelines to support analyses.
  • Examine flows of system resources (e.g., data, information, people, hardware).
  • Modify the user interface to suit our preferences.

Extensibility of EDICT® in Eclipse provides for the integration of a wide variety of domain-specific design elements and analyses. The EDICT® Extensions enhance the ability of EDICT Modeler with Systems Analysis tools. The following EDICT® Extensions are available:

  • ReqIF Import Extension: The ReqIF Import Extension provides an interface to requirements in the Requirements Interchange (ReqIF) format.
  • AADL Adapter Extension: The AADL Adapter Extension enables the import and export of AADL models.
  • System Analysis Extension: The Performance Analysis Extension includes Schedulability, Flow Delay, and Response Time analyses.
  • Version Control Extension: The Version Control Extension enables multiple users to work collaboratively with version control of the files (e.g., in a Git repository).

Problem: Attempts to apply Model-Based Systems Engineering tools can be complicated and frustrating because of the primitive or expensive tools being used.

Solution: EDICT makes use of Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL) in a way that enables a more explicit design model. Our tools improve the precision of AADL by enhancing the language capabilities and eliminating steep learning curves associated with learning MBSE technologies. A more faithful representation of the models’ entities, their relationships, and properties permits the application of accurate analyses to the system model.  Hence, architects and modelers do not need to learn complicated syntax for standard modeling formats. Rather, they can jump right into the task of modeling the system. Thus, easing the way to obtain requirements, design, and constraint information.

If you already have AADL models, then the AADL Adapter Extension can be used to import them into EDICT® Modeler.  Once imported, the models are available for viewing, enhancement and export.

The rich Graphical User Interface (GUI) of the EDICT® Tool Suite simplifies and hones the modeling and analysis activities to ensure you are not missing critical system characteristics.  The multiple architectural views and reporting features offer the ability to communicate through models more effectively and accurately.

The EDICT® Tool Suite is an affordable and extensible tool for easily transitioning to Model-Based Systems Engineering. It includes extensive built-in help and examples.  Users have access to the Resources page for guides, forums, papers, demonstration and training videos and other helpful information.  In addition, to enable our customers to leverage the EDICT® Tool Suite to its fullest, the WW Technology Group provides training and consulting services.

Get started right away by requesting a free 30-day evaluation version.


For more online information, visit these pages:

  • Click on FAQ for more information about EDICT®, MBSE, and AADL.
  • Click on Resources for resources that support EDICT® users
  • Click on Consulting for help applying EDICT® to your system
  • Click on Contact Us for help applying EDICT® to your system