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Type Inference in Flexible Model-Driven Engineering

Zolotas, Athanasios (2016) Type Inference in Flexible Model-Driven Engineering. EngD thesis, University of York.

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Model-driven Engineering (MDE) is an approach to software development that promises increased productivity and product quality. Domain models that conform to metamodels, both of which are the core artefacts in MDE approaches, are manipulated to perform different development processes using specific MDE tools. However, domain experts, who have detailed domain knowledge, typically lack the technical expertise to transfer this knowledge using MDE tools. Flexible or bottom-up Model-driven Engineering is an emerging approach to domain and systems modelling that tackles this challenge by promoting the use of simple drawing tools to increase the involvement of domain experts in MDE processes. In this approach, no metamodel is created upfront but instead the process starts with the definition of example models that will be used to infer a draft metamodel. When complete knowledge of the domain is acquired, a final metamodel is devised and a transition to traditional MDE approaches is possible. However, the lack of a metamodel that encodes the semantics of conforming models and of tools that impose these semantics bears some drawbacks, among others that of having models with nodes that are unintentionally left untyped. In this thesis we propose the use of approaches that use algorithms from three different research areas, that of classification algorithms, constraint programming and graph similarity to help with the type inference of such untyped nodes. We perform an evaluation of the proposed approaches in a number of randomly generated example models from 10 different domains with results suggesting that the approaches could be used for type inference both in an automatic or a semi-automatic style.

Item Type: Thesis (EngD)
Academic Units: The University of York > Computer Science (York)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.706071
Depositing User: Dr. Athanasios Zolotas
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2017 16:03
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2018 15:21
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/16380

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