Partial Behaviour Modelling: Foundations for Incremental and Iterative Model-Based Software Engineering

Sebastian Uchitel

Rigorous modelling of the intended behaviour of software intensive systems has been shown to be successfull in uncovering requirements and design flaws. However, the impact that behaviour modelling has had among practitioners is limited. The construction of behaviour models remains a difficult and laborious task that requires significant expertise. In addition, traditional approaches to behaviour models require complete descriptions of the system behaviour up to some level of abstraction. This completeness assumption is limiting in the context of software development process best practices which include iterative development, adoption of use-case and scenario-based techniques and viewpoint- or stakeholder-based analysis; practices which require modelling and analysis in the presence of partial information about system behaviour. Our aim is to support the iterative and incremental construction of behaviour models by means of construction, composition and analysis of partial, heterogeneous, yet formal, descriptions of behaviour. In this talk we discuss how modal transitions systems can provide the basis for such support and present some of the model synthesis and composition techniques we have developed.

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