Variant Management for the Software Defined Vehicle
In modern vehicle E/E architectures it is of utmost importance to ensure a lean and agile software development approach can be applied, still keeping in mind that hundreds of vehicle variants need to be equipped with their individual configured software. Integration of variant calibration procedures with modern embedded software development is an emerging problem area which needs to be solved to achieve a high efficiency in releasing software for the software defined vehicle.
Traditional methods employed in the automotive industry and software industry prove inadequate in this context. The waterfall-based processes in the automotive industry struggle to keep up with the speed of development, while software industry practices lack the necessary variant orientation, often relying on a "one-fits-all" approach.
Based on experiences from collaborating with companies facing this challenge, the talk highlights the realization among motivated software engineers that state-of-the-art vehicle software must be tailored to the specific circumstances of multiple vehicle models and their variants e.g.: hardware specifications, power configurations, regional considerations and size/weight variations. Thus applying a powerful variant management is crucial for being successful on the long run.
By utilizing Open Source Plugins for standard IDE's, one can adopt a rapid and adaptable method to implement variant management in embedded software programs. However, these plugins often overlook crucial automotive industry standards concerning functional safety, security, auditability and other industry regulations. As a provider of an automotive variant management system that has already demonstrated its effectiveness in these areas, we aim to showcase our approach in tackling this challenge and the evolution our system has undergone to effectively manage software variants for DevOps engineers engaged in software defined vehicles.