AI as test manager – research project OTS4CI turns the algorithm to a colleague

In modern software development, short development cycles and increasingly complex architectures, combined with high demands on product quality, determine the picture. To master this challenge, the inustry uses Continuous Integration (CI). In this case, software components are continuously assembled and automatically tested overnight.

A consortium consisting of three partners from science and industry is researching over a span of two years within the framework of the project “Optimised Test Selection for Continuous Integration (OTS4CI), how this process can be improved by optimising and automating the selection of test cases with the help of machine learning techniques.

The main challenge of the project is to map the complex process of test selection and prioritisation, which is normally performed manually by experienced testers, using suitable AI methods.

The technique of reinforcement learning is to be used for this task. This approach is an attempt to emulate learning behaviour in nature. An algorithm learns by interacting with information from its “environment” and subsequently receives information about the new state of the environment as well as a “reward”. The algorithm, also called an agent, should thereby learn a behaviour that maximises its reward.

The goal is to be achieved through an extended information model, in which data that accumulates during the development process is systematically analysed and used for test case selection,
is systematically analysed and used for test case selection.On the other hand, an environment model of the CI process will be developed. This model is fed with data from the information model and is intended to simulate the potential success of a certain selection of test cases in finding defects.

The successful selection of suitable test cases should then lead to the creation of a highly effective test plan through a so-called scheduling algorithm.

Participating project partners are the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg, KOSTAL Industrie Elektrik based in Hagen and ITPower Solutions from Berlin. The project is part of the KMU-innovativ funding programme of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and will run until 30 September 2024.

ITPower Solutions introduces certified quality management according to ISO 9001:2015

In June 2022 ITPower Solutions certified its quality management system according to ISO 9001:2015, one of the most common and widespread quality management standards. For the implementation within the company, all existing, relevant processes were analyzed according to the specifications of ISO 9001 and adapted to the standard if necessary. These included quality policy, planning and management processes, resource management as well as the value-adding core processes. This is intended to ensure the key objective of the standard, to meet customer requirements and continuously optimize processes.

With its certification being applicable for the core business area – providing engineering services for the development of embedded software – ITPower Solutions demonstrates that the quality criteria that have been in place for years are compliant with the standard in all project phases and are therefore comprehensible and reliable for the customer.

“ITPower Solutions thus underlines its role as a specialist in the field of quality assurance of embedded software to provide our customers with services of excellent quality. It was important for us to show that the quality of our work results is demonstrably supported by the quality of our processes. For this reason we decided to align our activities in accordance with a professional quality management system and to have it certified by the accredited certifying body PÜG GmbH,” says Dr. Sadegh Sadeghipour, Managing Director of ITPower Solutions, commenting on the successful certification.


KI-LOK research project develops certifiable test methods for AI-based components in railway technology

ITPower Solutions is a partner in a new research project investigating the use of new test methods in the development of AI-based systems. The aim of the project, called AI Locomotive Systems (KI-LOK), is to develop test procedures and methods for the safeguarding and certification of AI-based technologies for safety-critical applications in railway technology.

The research project is being carried out by a project network with a total of five partners. In addition to ITPower Solutions GmbH, the Fraunhofer Institute for Open Communication Systems FOKUS, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Thales Deutschland GmbH and neurocat GmbH are involved in the project implementation. The project is funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy within the framework of the funding guideline “New Vehicle and System Technologies” and is supported by TÜV-Rheinland.

The research project was motivated by the expected spread of AI solutions and machine learning (ML) in railway technology. The use of such technologies will not be limited to comfort functions, but will increasingly push into safety-critical areas. However, there are no industrially suitable methods and tools for ensuring the functional safety of AI systems in railway technology.

A central challenge here is the new properties of software for AI applications. The use of machine learning creates software products that are much more dynamic than the hard-coded algorithms of classic software. The behaviour of such systems is often not transparently comprehensible and is difficult to predict.

The project results expected by the partners can be summarised in three points. In a first step, methods and techniques for the verification and validation of AI systems will be developed. In a further step, the development of the KI-LOK methodology will provide a framework that brings together appropriate tools and processes. In the third step, a KI-LOK demonstrator platform will be developed to show and evaluate the benefits of the developed techniques.

The project starts on 01 April 2021 and runs over a period of three years.


New research project PoC4Vet

ITPower Solutions is a partner in a new research project in the veterinary field. The project called PoC4Vet aims to develop a fast, mobile and reliable method for the detection of pathogens and to make it available as a PoC (Point of Care) application. This should provide physicians with important information for diagnosis and therapy.

Additional project partners are the Center for Embedded Systems ZeSys e.V. and the University of Potsdam’s Institute of Biochemistry and Biology. The project is supported by AiF Projekt GmbH and funded by the Central Innovation Program for SMEs (ZIM) of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi).

The PoC4Vet project aims to identify Leptospira bacteria. These bacteria trigger the infectious disease leptospirosis that occurs frequently in dogs. Until now, probes of the pathogen can only be analyzed in specialized laboratories.

Within the scope of the project a two-step procedure is envisaged. First the existence of the pathogen is confirmed by detecting specific antibodies. This method makes use of the optical properties of fluorescence-labeled antibodies, which are recognized with the aid of a detector. The pathogen is then tested for possible resistance to antibiotics.

The planned solution will be implemented as a mobile diagnostic device. The overall system will be controlled by a software module that will enable an automated diagnosis.

The Poc4Vet project started on 01 March 2021 and will be running over a period of two years.


Consulting partnership with Intland Software

ITPower Solutions has expanded its partner network. As a service provider for complex software development projects, ITPower Solutions is continuously looking for powerful technologies and innovative know-how. Therefore, we are proud to announce our consulting partnership with Intland Software. Intland Software is the developer and provider of industry-leading software tools for the development and deployment of safety-critical technologies.

The company’s flagship product, codeBeamer ALM, is a fully integrated end-to-end software platform for application lifecycle management, including support for regulation-compliant development processes. Intland Software’s tools help reduce the time, risk and cost of product innovation and regulatory compliance.

“Through our partnership with Intland Software, we strengthen our consulting expertise in the area of ALM services and ensure the high quality of our services provided to our customers.”

Dr. Sadegh Sadeghipour
Founder and Managing Director ITPower Solutions GmbH


New add-on for ContinoProva available

ContinoProva is an efficient test tool for automated testing of embedded software. In order to offer new users a simple and quick access to ContinoProva, we have created the add-on BlinkTest Simulation, which allows you to get to know the features and behavior of ContinoProva within a given test scenario.

For this purpose, we have developed a simulation environment consisting of a test object and a tool environment. The simulation demonstrates how tests are specified, structured and executed. Errors in the test run are recognized by the tool and shown in the test report. Specifically, BlinkTest simulates an emergency braking situation of a vehicle to test if the emergency brake warning light operates correctly. During the test execution, the test components react to inputs from ContinoProva and provide the necessary data for test evaluation.

Although test cases and the test environment will be much more complex in real test projects, BlinkTest allows the user to experience a simplified but realistic test scenario.

The BlinkTest simulation environment is available now in the ContinoProva download area and on our evaluation website.


TISAX test result is available

ITPower Solutions GmbH constantly attaches great importance to confidentiality, availability and integrity in handling information. We are also obliged to meet the special requirements in terms of information security that apply in the automotive industry. We achieve this at the highest level by taking extensive measures to protect sensitive and confidential information.

Therefore, ITPower Solutions GmbH conducted the examination procedure for TISAX certification. TISAX stands for “Trusted Information Security Assessment Exchange” and is a standard for information security developed by the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA). It is based on the Information Security Assessment (ISA) developed by the VDA – a list of questions based on the ISO 27001 standard.

The TISAX assessment was conducted in November 2020 by the accredited testing institute operational services GmbH & Co. KG. TISAX and the TISAX results are not intended for the general public. The result is exclusively retrievable over the ENX Portal: https://portal.enx.com/de-DE/

TISAX is a registered trademark of the ENX Association