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A proactive support for conceptual interoperability analysis in software systems

: Abukwaik, Hadil; Naab, Matthias; Rombach, H. Dieter


Bass, Len (Ed.) ; Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers -IEEE-; IEEE Computer Society:
12th Working IEEE/IFIP Conference on Software Architecture, WICSA 2015. Proceedings : 4-8 May 2015, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Los Alamitos, Calif.: IEEE Computer Society Conference Publishing Services (CPS), 2015
ISBN: 978-1-4799-1922-2
Working Conference on Software Architecture (WICSA) <12, 2015, Montréal>
Fraunhofer IESE ()
Unified Modeling Language (UML); application program interfaces; software architecture; information extraction; context; documentation; interoperability

Successfully integrating a software system with an existing other software system requires, beyond technical mismatches, identifying and resolving conceptual mismatches that might result in worthless integration and costly rework. Often, not all relevant architectural information about the system to integrate with is publicly available, as it is hidden in internal architectural documents and not exposed in the public API documentation. Thus, we propose a framework of conceptual interoperability information and a formalization of it. Based on this framework, a system's architect can semi-automatically extract interoperability-relevant parts from his architecture and lower-level design documentation and publish it in a standardized and formalized way. The goal is to keep the additional effort for providing the interoperability-relevant information as low as possible and to encourage architects to provide it proactively. Thus, we extract from UML diagrams and textual documentation information that is relevant for conceptual interoperability. Companies that aim at interoperation of their systems with others, e.g. Companies initiating an ecosystem, should be highly motivated to provide such interoperability information in order to grow their business impact by more successful interoperations. In a more advanced level, also the architect, who is integrating his system with a provided one, could extract interoperability-related information about his existing system and we envision to automatically match the pieces of both sides and identify conceptual mismatches.