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Implementing support for software processes in a process-centered software engineering environment

: Kobialka, H.-U.

urn:nbn:de:0011-b-731159 (940 KByte PDF)
MD5 Fingerprint: e810939ed65c9e5819971c857a1adc8f
Erstellt am: 31.07.2002

Sankt Augustin: GMD Forschungszentrum Informationstechnik, 1998, 202 S.
Zugl.: Cottbus, TU, Diss., 1998
GMD research series, 1998,15
ISBN: 3-88457-339-X
Dissertation, Elektronische Publikation
Fraunhofer AIS ( IAIS) ()

This thesis investigates how software processes (i.e. the way how software is developed) can be supported by a process-centered software engineering environment (PSEE). We focus on the implementation of process support and its change during enactment. We present a PSEE offering a set of services and process modeling languages (PMLs) tailored for process implementation and change. Current PMLs have great problems implementing sufficient support for state-of-the-art development processes. Their PSEEs impose a high entry barrier (i.e., the effort for switching to a PSEE is very high), and offer only limited support for incremental change during enactment. There are several reasons for this: Most PMLs and their PSEEs require a complete description of the process in terms of the PML in advance, and restrict all issues which have not been considered. Using today's PMLs, the description of a reasonable process becomes quite voluminous and complex. Size and complexity increase further if the PSEE lacks some basic terms or services, like task hierarchies, agendas, configuration management, or monitoring. Most PMLs stem from general purpose programming or specification languages. Changing of process models during enactment is hard and requires skills which can not be expected from a typical project leader. Processes are applied in an organization in several variations. Existing PSEEs demonstrate their capabilities with a singe process example. Most PSEEs permit instantiation of multiple processes, but cooperation between concurrent processes is only supported on a low level. Our approach consists of a PSEE, called ADDD, which offers a run-time environment for task execution based on an integrated configuration management system. The process engine is based on the event-trigger paradigm. The main issues are the following

- Projects can start using ADDD instantly and model their process support incrementally during enactment.
- Not the entire process has to be specified within the PML, but only those parts which should be supported or
controlled. In principle, developers are not restricted in their work unless explicitly stated otherwise.
- The main focus is on change during enactment. Concepts known from programming languages hindering
change have been excluded. We adopted event-trigger and customization technology. The process can be
driven and constrained by policies associated with tasks, similar to the "Strategy pattern" known from the field
of design patterns.
- Mastering change impact is of major concern. The effect of a policy can be limited to the associated task and ist
subtasks. Therefore, (change of) process support can be restricted to particular tasks according to their needs.