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Creating visual Domain-Specific Modeling Languages from end-user demonstration

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3 Author(s)
Hyun Cho ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Univ. of Alabama Tuscaloosa, Tuscaloosa, AL, USA ; Gray, J. ; Syriani, E.

Domain-Specific Modeling Languages (DSMLs) have received recent interest due to their conciseness and rich expressiveness for modeling a specific domain. However, DSML adoption has several challenges because development of a new DSML requires both domain knowledge and language development expertise (e.g., defining abstract/concrete syntax and specifying semantics). Abstract syntax is generally defined in the form of a metamodel, with semantics associated to the metamodel. Thus, designing a metamodel is a core DSML development activity. Furthermore, DSMLs are often developed incrementally by iterating across complex language development tasks. An iterative and incremental approach is often preferred because the approach encourages end-user involvement to assist with verifying the DSML correctness and feedback on new requirements. However, if there is no tool support, iterative and incremental DSML development can be mundane and error-prone work. To resolve issues related to DSML development, we introduce a new approach to create DSMLs from a set of domain model examples provided by an end-user. The approach focuses on (1) the identification of concrete syntax, (2) inducing abstract syntax in the form of a metamodel, and (3) inferring static semantics from a set of domain model examples. In order to generate a DSML from user-supplied examples, our approach uses graph theory and metamodel design patterns.

Published in:

Modeling in Software Engineering (MISE), 2012 ICSE Workshop on

Date of Conference:

2-3 June 2012