Informal Requirements Specification Exercise

Developed with support from the National Science Foundation

Version 1.0


The purpose of this exercise is to prepare a (non-formal) requirements specification for a software system. It may later be used as a baseline for work in formal specification.

Assignment details


Because this exercise concentrates on the specification and documentation of requirements, rather than on eliciting them from clients or stakeholders, the problem domain is one that you should already be familiar with. You are expected to take into account your own knowledge of the problem domain in completing this work.

You may complete this exercise by yourself, but it is preferable to work as a member of a team (2-3 members). If you do this, your colleagues may have differing views about the requirements. You should reach some kind of consensus about the requirements and document them as well as you can. There is more than one possible "right answer" for this project.

System description

Study this overview of the system you are to specify. It is taken from a similar problem addressed at the Fourth International Workshop on Software Specification and Design, April 3-4, 1987, Monterey, California.

It is likely that you have are familiar with elevator systems similar to the one described here. You should use your own experience to help you understand the details of the system for which you are trying to specify the requirements.


If you have questions about the assignment, please consult the instructor.