Ilana Dashevsky and Vicki Balzano of the Space Telescope Science Institute point out (PDF）：
JWST has a bunch of pre-written scripts for performing specific tasks to ‘maximize efficiency and minimize ground systems’.
Scientists on the ground can tell JWST what to do, which is then handed off to a script processor program to interpret.
The program will call other applications and systems according to the access system of the script.
Script processing flow diagram
ISIM is a collection of telescope camera instruments, and JS scripts control their working process.
NASA directly refers to ISIM as JWSTthe heart of the telescope。
by the now discontinuedNombasThe website knows that the last update to the software dates back to January 2003, some 20 years ago, but we’re not surprised by the JWST team’s choice.
It is reported that although JWST will be launched at the end of 2021, the project actually sprouted in 1989.
The actual construction of JWST started in 2004, just two years after the release of ScriptEase 5.
Of course, the function of a spacecraft is usually quite simple. Researchers are more concerned with its robustness than with the most novel technical solutions.
Illustration of simplified architecture in Maximizing Efficiency paper
Dashevsky and Balzano do not give a date of writing, but the year of publication is 2006, and the ISIM manuscript is from 2011 (also said 2010).
By the way, this knowledge base also details the 68 GB solid-state memory onboard the JWST, which it says can hold 58.8 to 65 GB of actual scientific data.