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Special Issue Paper
Simplicity-first model-based plug-in development
Article first published online: 25 DEC 2013
Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Software: Practice and Experience
Special Issue: Focus Section on Developing Tools as Plug-ins: TOPI 2012
Volume 44, Issue 3, pages 277–297, March 2014
How to Cite
Naujokat, S., Neubauer, J., Lamprecht, A.-L., Steffen, B., Jörges, S. and Margaria, T. (2014), Simplicity-first model-based plug-in development. Softw: Pract. Exper., 44: 277–297. doi: 10.1002/spe.2243
- Issue published online: 5 FEB 2014
- Article first published online: 25 DEC 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 18 OCT 2013
- Manuscript Revised: 13 AUG 2013
- Manuscript Received: 27 OCT 2012
- domain-specific APIs;
- process modeling;
- code generation;
- loose programming;
- dynamic service binding
In this article, we present our experience with over a decade of strict simplicity orientation in the development and evolution of plug-ins. The point of our approach is to enable our graphical modeling framework jABC to capture plug-in development in a domain-specific setting. The typically quite tedious and technical plug-in development is shifted this way from a programming task to the modeling level, where it can be mastered also by application experts without programming expertise. We show how the classical plug-in development profits from a systematic domain-specific API design and how the level of abstraction achieved this way can be further enhanced by defining adequate building blocks for high-level plug-in modeling. As the resulting plug-in models can be compiled and deployed automatically, our approach decomposes plug-in development into three phases where only the realization phase requires plug-in-specific effort. By using our modeling framework jABC, this effort boils down to graphical, tool-supported process modeling. Furthermore, we support the automatic completion of process sketches for executability. All this will be illustrated along the most recent plug-in-based evolution of the jABC framework, which witnessed quite some bootstrapping effects. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.