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Boeing: Bold Stroke Avionics Software Family

The Bold Stroke Software Product Line is comprised of a wide range of artifacts required to create Operational Flight Programs for a variety of Boeing military fighters, including a highly configurable architecture, application components, middleware framework, and development processes and tools. Operational Flight Programs are mission critical distributed real-time embedded applications supporting the avionics and cockpit functions for the pilot. A well-defined software architecture and carefully designed approaches to handle commonality and variability were crucial to the success of this product line. The architecture is heavily based on and expressed via object-oriented patterns. These patterns were leveraged to convey both the architecture and its rationale to a large community of software engineers previously experienced primarily with military standard assembly language systems. The product line exploits commercial standards, technologies, and products as much as possible, using an open source real-time Object Request Broker – The ACE ORB-developed in partnership with Washington University in St. Louis and a commercial real-time operating system. The Bold Stroke Software Product Line is the foundation for an increasing number of production and research programs including several funded by the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.


“Reducing Avionics Software Cost Through Component Based Product Line Development,” David C. Sharp. Patrick Donohoe (ed.) Proceedings SPLC1, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2000.

“Freeing Product Line Architectures from Execution Dependencies.” Bryan S. Doerr & David C. Sharp. Patrick Donohoe (ed.) Proceedings SPLC1, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2000.

“Software Architecture Development for Product Line Software,” Timothy J. Popp. AIAA/IEEE Digital Avionics Systems Conference, October 1999.

About This Product Line

Boeing was inducted into the Hall of Fame at theSecond Software Product Line Conference (SPLC2).

Cited improvements to the Boeing Bold Stroke Avionics Software Family include improved affordability, quality, and system timeliness.