Many systems of the future
will be of ultra-large size on one or many dimensions – number of lines
of code; number of people employing the system for different purposes;
amount of data stored, accessed, manipulated, and refined; number of
connections and interdependencies among software components; and the
number of hardware elements to which they interface. They will be
ultra-large-scale (ULS) systems.
The characteristics of ULS
systems, already evident in some of today’s largest systems, imply
changes in the fundamental assumptions that underlie today’s software
engineering approaches. The gaps are strategic, not tactical. Issues
that are not significant at smaller scales become significant at
ultra-large scales. A multi-disciplinary perspective and new research
This talk shares the results of a year-long study on ULS systems, documented in Ultra-Large-Scale Systems: The Software Challenge of the Future (ISBN 0-9786956-0-7), as well as recent work in that area.