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Semantic Integration of Software and Systems Engineering Environments

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2 Author(s)
Moser, T. ; Christian Doppler Lab. for Software Eng. Integration for Flexible Autom. Syst., Vienna Univ. of Technol., Vienna, Austria ; Biffl, S.

Software-intensive systems in business information technology (IT) and industrial automation have become increasingly complex due to the need for more flexible system reconfiguration and business and engineering processes. Systems and software-engineering projects depend on the cooperation of experts from heterogeneous engineering domains using tools that were not designed to cooperate seamlessly. Current semantic-engineering-environment integration is often ad hoc and fragile, thereby making the evolution of tools and the reuse of integration solutions across projects unnecessarily inefficient and risky. This paper describes the engineering-knowledge-base (EKB) framework for engineering-environment integration in multidisciplinary engineering projects. The EKB stores explicit engineering knowledge to support access to and management of engineering models across tools and disciplines by providing 1) data integration based on mappings between local and domain-level engineering concepts; 2) transformations between local engineering concepts; and 3) advanced applications built on these foundations, e.g., end-to-end analyses. As a result, experts from different organizations may use their well-known tools and data models and can access data from other tools in their syntax. The research results have been evaluated in the industrial-application domain of software-intensive production-automation systems. The evaluation results indicate an effort-reduction for reuse in new engineering projects and finding defects earlier in the engineering process.

Published in:

Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, Part C: Applications and Reviews, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:42 ,  Issue: 1 )