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Software Systems Principles: A Survey (SRA computer science series)

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Some type of software system is an integral part of almost any computer- based information processing system. While many books describing some aspects of software systems are available, few, if any, take an approach sufficiently broad to include all the topics of importance to understanding the design and operation of such systems. During the 1960s, software experts in particular areas (for example, compilers, operating systems, and file systems) developed much of the technology underlying these systems. In the late 1960s and continuing into the 1970s, the emphasis has shifted toward the development of large, integrated systems that include many different functions.

This book is based on the belief that the advent of large software systems demands a broad understanding by many people of the design and operation of such systems. Specialists in any of the subareas impinging upon software systems are today required to design their parts of a system to fit well with other parts; this necessitates a clear understanding of the total system. In order to supervise properly, technical managers of groups that build and use software systems must have knowledge of all the parts and of how they fit together. Users of software systems can profit from an increased understanding of the functions available and of how they are provided.

The major goal of this volume is to provide a broad-sweep coverage of software systems. It is tutorial, assuming a minimum of technical back- ground on the part of the reader. It aims at completeness in coverage, assuming that the numerous references will provide ample opportunity for deeper study. It concentrates on principles applicable to many systems, assuming that the reader will potentially be dealing with several different systems.
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