Hasti Ranjkesh

Thesis Title: A By-Example Model Transformation Method for Model-Driven Method Engineering                  


The major vision of Model-Driven Development (MDD) is to use models as primary artifacts during the different phases of software development. MDD presents approaches which make it easier to generate, understand, and maintain models. Model transformation is a pivotal concept in MDD approaches, and it provides an effective mechanism for automating the generation and manipulation of models.
On the other hand, it has become increasingly important to be able to adapt or construct a software development process based on the specific characteristics of the development project at hand; this has resulted in the emergence of a new branch of study called Situational Method Engineering (SME). Even though MDD has originated in the context of software engineering, previous studies show that it can also be effective and advantageous in the context of SME; however, the relevant model transformation techniques should be adapted and specialized for use in transforming the process models produced in SME.
The traditional way to implement model transformation is to use executable model transformation languages to specify the transformation rules and automate the transformation process. However, the use of model transformation languages may present certain challenges to the users, especially those who are not familiar with the transformation language used. Model Transformation By Example (MTBE) aims to address these challenges by enabling users to define a prototypical set of mappings between the source and target model-instance languages; the metamodel-level transformation rules can then be inferred and generated semi-automatically. Thus, users work directly at the model instance level and configure the mappings without knowing any details about the metamodel definition or the hidden concepts. Recently, a special kind of MTBE approach, called Model Transformation By Demonstration (MTBD), has been introduced in which transformation patterns are inferred by recording and analyzing user operations; these patterns can then be reused through automatic pattern matching.
The main objective of this research project is the development of a Model-Driven Method Engineering (MDME) framework for applying MTBE techniques for transforming the process models produced in SME. To this aim, previous research conducted on applying MDD approaches in SME will first be studied. Existing MTBE techniques will then be scrutinized in detail, with the ultimate aim of determining their potential for use in the context of SME. A MDD framework will then be proposed which adapts MTBE techniques for application to the process models used in SME. Ultimately, the validity of the proposed framework and transformation methods will be assessed based on special evaluation criteria, and also through a case study.

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Contact Information

   Email: ranjkesh[at] ce [dot] sharif [dot] edu