Towards a Model-Centric Approach for Developing Enterprise Information Systems

Towards a Model-Centric Approach for Developing Enterprise Information Systems

Petraq Papajorgji (Canadian Institute of Technology, Tirana, Albania) and Panos M. Pardalos (Center for Applied Optimization, University of Florida, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61692-852-0.ch309
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This chapter aims to present a new modeling paradigm that promises to significantly increase the efficiency of developing enterprise information systems. Currently, the software industry faces considerable challenges as it tries to build larger, more complex, software systems with fewer resources. Although modern programming languages such as C++ and Java have in general improved the software development process, they have failed to significantly increase developer’s productivity. Thus, developers are considering other paths to address this issue. One of the potential paths is designing, developing and deploying enterprise information systems using the Model Driven Architecture (MDA). MDA is a model-centric approach that allows for modeling the overall business of an enterprise and capturing requirements to developing, deploying, integrating, and managing different kinds of software components without considering any particular implementation technology. At the center of this approach are models; the software development process is driven by constructing models representing the software under development. Code that expresses the implementation of the model in a certain underlying technology is obtained as a result of model transformation. Thus, the intellectual investment spent in developing the business model of an enterprise is not jeopardized by the continuous changes of the implementation technologies. Currently there are two main approaches trying to implement MDA-based tools. One of the approaches is based on the Object Constraint Language and the other on Action Language. An example of designing, developing and deploying an application using this new modeling paradigm is presented. The MDA approach to software development is considered as the biggest shift since the move from Assembler to the first high level languages.

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