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CIP-Tool should not be confused with Ciptool, a Bluetooth configuration tool.
For other uses of CIP, see CIP (disambiguation).

CIP-Tool (Communicating Interacting Processes) is a software tool for the modelling and implementation of event-driven applications. It is especially relevant for the development of software components of embedded systems.


The underlying mathematical formalisms of CIP were first proposed by the physicist, Hugo Fierz. The tool was subsequently developed at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in a series of research projects during the 1990s. Development and distribution has since been transferred to a commercially operating spin-off company, CIP-Tool, based in Solothurn, Switzerland.


The CIP-model is basically a finite state machine, or more precisely, an extended finite state machine (processes can store and modify variables and can use these to enable or disable transitions).

In CIP, a desired system behaviour is broken down into distinct processes, each of which is a set of states interconnected by transitions. One state in every process is tagged as active state. This active status can be transferred to another state through the execution of a transition. Such transitions are triggered by events (from external sources, e.g. sensors) or in-pulses (from other processes). Transitions can in turn send one or several out-pulses (to other processes) or actions (to external receivers, e.g. effectors).

The CIP-model is...
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