Videos from FormaliSE 2020

FormaliSE 2020 keynote: Shahar Maoz

FormaliSE 2020 was organised as a 1-day virtual conference co-located with ICSE on July 13, 2020. The main objective of FormaliSE is to foster the integration between the formal methods and the software engineering communities, to strengthen the – still too weak – links between them, and to stimulate researchers to share ideas, techniques, and results, with the ultimate goal to propose novel solutions to the fraught problem of improving the quality of software systems. We here bring you a keynote from Formalise 2020, given by Shahar Maoz: SYNTECH: Synthesis Technologies for Reactive Systems Software Engineers

Assoc. Prof. Shahar Maoz (Tel Aviv University) gave a FormaliSE 2020 keynote on
"SYNTECH: Synthesis Technologies for Reactive Systems Software Engineers"


Reactive synthesis is an automated procedure to obtain a correct-by-construction reactive system from a given declarative, temporal specification. Examples of these systems include the software controllers of robotic systems. Despite recent advancements on the theory and algorithms of reactive synthesis, e.g., efficient synthesis for the GR(1) fragment of linear temporal logic, many challenges remain in bringing reactive synthesis technologies to the hands of software engineers. The SYNTECH project is about bridging this gap. It addresses challenges that relate to the change from writing code to writing specifications, and the development of tools to support a specification-centric rather than a code-centric software development process. In this talk I will give an overview of the SYNTECH project’s results from the last five years. These include the Spectra specification language and Spectra Tools, a synthesizer and related analyses aiming at helping engineers write better specifications for synthesis. I will also present the application of Spectra to classic problems as well as to autonomous Lego robots and some example simulated systems, as developed by undergraduate computer science students in project classes we have taught. Finally, I will discuss new challenges and research opportunities.

The talk covers results from papers in ESEC/FSE’15, ESEC/FSE’16, ESEC/FSE’17, ICSE’19, and FM'19. Joint work with Gal Amram, Elizabeth Firman, Aviv Kuvent, Or Pistiner, Jan O. Ringert, and Rafi Shalom. The project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 638049, SYNTECH). For more information, see

Short biography

Shahar Maoz is an Associate Professor at the School of Computer Science in Tel Aviv University, where he heads the Software Modeling Laboratory. Shahar has a BSc and MSc computer science degrees from Tel Aviv University, and a PhD from the Weizmann Institute. From 2010 to 2012 he was post-doc research fellow in RWTH Aachen University, Germany, with a postdoctoral fellowship from the Minerva Foundation. In 2015-2016 he spent a sabbatical at MIT CSAIL. Shahar’s research interests are in software engineering, specifically in the use of models and formal methods for software evolution, model inference, testing, and synthesis. His work has been published in top software engineering and modeling conferences and journals. He is a recipient of an ERC Starting Grant for the development of synthesis technologies for reactive systems software engineers (project SYNTECH).

Author: Einar Broch Johnsen