SyncCharts in C

Statecharts are a well-established visual formalism for the description of reactive real-time systems. The SyncCharts dialect of Statecharts, which builds on the synchrony hypothesis, has a sound formal basis and ensures deterministic behavior. This report presents SyncCharts in C (SC), an approach on how to seamlessly and efficiently embed SyncCharts constructs into a conventional imperative programming language. SC offers deterministic concurrency and preemption via a simulation of multi-threading, inspired by reactive processing. SC can be used as a regular programming language, requiring just a C compiler; no special tools or hardware are needed. However SC's conciseness, completeness and semantic closeness to SyncCharts make it an attractive candidate in a number of other scenarios: 1) as an intermediate target language for synthesizing graphical SyncChart models into executable code, in a more traceable manner than the traditional path through Esterel; 2) as instruction set architecture for programming precision timed (PRET) or reactive architectures; or 3) as a virtual machine instruction set. A reference implementation of SC, based on light-weight C macros, is available as open source code.

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