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Modelling Systems: Practical Tools and Techniques for Software Development: 2nd Edition Modelling Systems: Practical Tools and Techniques for Software Development: 2nd Edition

Modelling Systems: Practical Tools and Techniques for Software Development: 2nd Edition

John Fitzgerald and Peter Gorm Larsen, Cambridge University Press, 2nd Edition, 2009 ISBN 0 521 62348 0 with a foreword by Dines Bjørner and Cliff Jones Hardback £40.00 Paperback c £24.95 This site contains Exercises, VDM-SL examples from the book, course material and more information on the VDM family of modelling languages and tools.

About the book

How can we make sure that the software we build does what it is supposed to? This book provides an insight into established techniques which help developers to overcome the complexity of software development by constructing models of software systems in early design stages. It uses one of the leading formal methods, VDM (Vienna Development Method), and combines training in the formalism with industry-strength tool support and examples derived from real industrial applications. The principles taught here also apply to many of the current generation of formal methods. This second edition has been updated to include advanced online tool support for formal modelling as well as up-to-date reports on real commercial applications in areas as diverse as business information systems and firmware design.


Foreword to the first edition; Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. Constructing a model; 3. VDMTools Lite; 4. Describing system properties using logical expressions; 5. The elements of a formal model; 6. Sets; 7. Sequences; 8. Mappings; 9. Recursive structures; 10. Validating models; 11. State-based modelling; 12. Large-scale modelling; 13. Using VDM in practice; A. Language guide; B. Solutions to exercises; Bibliography; Subject index; Definitions index. ISBN 0 521 62348 0 You can order the book (including inpection copies) from the Cambridge University Press Site

Tool support

SCSK Systems has kindly provided a special version of VDMTools to support our book. VDMTools Lite is available free of charge and can be downloaded from www.vdmtools.jp/en. Versions are available for Windows 2000/XP, Mac (G4, G5 and x86) and Linux. For academic users, site licenses are available, also free of charge, for the full version of the tool. The full version includes automatic code generation for Java and C++, dynamic link library and CORBA support. Please contact VDM.SP@csk.com for any queries related to licensing. The alternative to VDMTools is to use the Overture open source solution built on top of the Eclipse platform. A tutorial introducing Overture in a way similar to chapter 3 of the book can be downloaded from here. Overture stand-alone executables for Windows, Mac and Linux are also freely available.

Learning and Teaching Materials Online

We have teaching materials for the book.

Book Examples


  1. General Exercises (Questions Answers)
  2. Logic (Questions Answers)
  3. Using Sets (Questions Answers)
  4. Using Sequences (Questions Answers)
  5. Using Mappings (Questions Answers)
  6. Implicit Specification
  7. Validation
  8. Mock Examination material