A constraint modeling framework for domain-specific languages
The growing usage of Domain Specific Modeling Languages (DSML) for architecture view frameworks induces a need for automatic verification of non-functional model properties like completeness and consistency. However, we argue that the high demand for tailored architecture view frameworks is not complemented by appropriate constraint specification facilities. OCL is a common language for defining modeling constraints, but industry user reports indicate that despite its accuracy, it is too complex to be adopted in industrial scale. Approaches that were proposed to simplify the use of OCL either operate on technical formalisms or lack tool support to express new, or more complex types of constraints that can be validated automatically on the model. To address this challenge, we present a constraint modeling framework for the specification and validation of constraints on DSMLs. A Constraint Modeling Language (CML) created based on this framework provides a high level constraint specification environment by using extensible template implementations to enable the automatic validation in computer aided software engineering (CASE) tools. We evaluate the approach in different industry projects and observe that using the proposed framework enhances understandability and effectiveness of constraint specification.
Antonino, Pablo Oliveira