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Interview with Yves Maumary, our Software Design Manager

With the objective to create an interactive platform where our followers can receive more detailed information about our products and the people behind our products, I’ll introduce our team of software engineers.

Today we’ll meet Yves Maumary, PhD, our Software Design Manager for  High-Speed Digitizers.

1. Yves, can you give us some information about your technical background and history?

I have always been curious, wanting to understand how everything works and so naturally I ended up in physics, eventually specializing in elementary particles and high energy physics. I started my professional career as a physicist at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) doing high energy physics research and writing beam steering applications for the particle accelerators. I transitioned from research to industry by first writing embedded software for digital oscilloscopes and then, in 1998 I co-founded Acqiris in order to bring high-speed digitizer technology to modular systems and personal computers.

Since joining Keysight Technologies as part of the Acqiris Operations at the end of 2006, I have also been active in the IVI Foundation and co-authored the IviDigitizer class specification as well as the AWG extensions of the IviFgen class specification.

2. Yves, what is your role as software technical leader of the CMS Division’s Digitizer Components?

My team of software engineers develops the driver used by our customers to control our digitizer modules, as well as the specific tools needed for their development. My role is to supervise this development, give technical advice for strategic decisions pertaining to software technology and make sure the developers have all the necessary knowledge, tools, and guidance to deliver the best possible software to run our products.

Since the beginning, we have chosen to support all our instruments with a unique driver, to simplify the combination of different models into a larger system, as well as make the upgrade to a new model a transparent operation for our users. Indeed, specific application software interfaces to the same driver interface and the only required step to integrate a new digitizer is a driver update. Furthermore, this driver is compliant with the IVI Foundation’s IviDigitizer class specification.

3. How do you define software quality?

It is my strong conviction that quality and performance – an integral part of quality – start with the design. Also, it is by now well-known and proven that agile methods yield the best results when it comes to delivering functional software on time. In that sense, we adopted mandatory code reviews several years ago: every line of code must be peer-reviewed before it is committed to our source repository. Implementation of unit tests is of course also required for each new function, method or property. We have full coverage of our driver API with unit tests (“black box” testing), and extensive internal unit tests (“white box” testing). By the way, API testing is part of the standard requirements for any IVI driver. In addition, the IVI standard sets testing requirements for the driver’s installer.

Over the years, we have also