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White Papers

Engineering responsibility should not require the stimulation that comes in the wake of catastrophe.

Samuel Florman
The Civilized Engineer

The first step in solving any problem is to understand it.  People often propose solutions to problems that they do not understand and then are surprised when the solutions fail to have the anticipated effect. These web pages contain some basic information about software safety.

The white papers in the following list provide an overview of topics in software safety. They are written as an introduction to the issues in the field. For research papers, conference papers, and journal articles in referred publications, see the further resources section below.

   System and Software Safety


What risk is there in computers?

bulletAren't safety and reliability the same?

How is software safety different from other kinds of safety?


How do we approach safety?

   Design, Verification, and Management

bulletHow do we design for safety?
bullet How does human-computer interaction fit into design for safety?
bulletHow can safety be verified?
bullet How can management support safety?

   Hazard Analysis

bulletWhat is hazard analysis?
bullet What is preliminary hazard analysis?
bulletWhat is system hazard analysis?
bullet What is software (subsystem) hazard analysis?



What kinds of accidents happen?


What causes accidents?


   Further Resources

bullet Publications by Safeware staff and affiliated researchers
bulletTraining in software safety


   In Summary

bulletList of software safety tasks


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