A unified approach to architecture conformance checking

Caracciolo, Andrea Enrico Francis (2016). A unified approach to architecture conformance checking. (Dissertation, Universität Bern, Philosophisch-naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät, Institut für Informatik)

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Architectural decisions can be interpreted as structural and behavioral constraints that must be enforced in order to guarantee overarching qualities in a system. Enforcing those constraints in a fully automated way is often challenging and not well supported by current tools. Current approaches for checking architecture conformance either lack in usability or offer poor options for adaptation. To overcome this problem we analyze the current state of practice and propose an approach based on an extensible, declarative and empirically-grounded specification language. This solution aims at reducing the overall cost of setting up and maintaining an architectural conformance monitoring environment by decoupling the conceptual representation of a user-defined rule from its technical specification prescribed by the underlying analysis tools. By using a declarative language, we are able to write tool-agnostic rules that are simple enough to be understood by untrained stakeholders and, at the same time, can be can be automatically processed by a conformance checking validator. Besides addressing the issue of cost, we also investigate opportunities for increasing the value of conformance checking results by assisting the user towards the full alignment of the implementation with respect to its architecture. In particular, we show the benefits of providing actionable results by introducing a technique which automatically selects the optimal repairing solutions by means of simulation and profit-based quantification. We perform various case studies to show how our approach can be successfully adopted to support truly diverse industrial projects. We also investigate the dynamics involved in choosing and adopting a new automated conformance checking solution within an industrial context. Our approach reduces the cost of conformance checking by avoiding the need for an explicit management of the involved validation tools. The user can define rules using a convenient high-level DSL which automatically adapts to emerging analysis requirements. Increased usability and modular customization ensure lower costs and a shorter feedback loop.

Item Type: Thesis (Dissertation)
Division/Institute: 08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Computer Science (INF)
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Computer Science (INF) > Software Composition Group (SCG)
UniBE Contributor: Caracciolo, Andrea Enrico Francis and Nierstrasz, Oscar Marius
Subjects: 000 Computer science, knowledge & systems
500 Science > 510 Mathematics
Language: English
Submitter: Igor Hammer
Date Deposited: 11 Apr 2016 09:36
Last Modified: 27 Jan 2017 15:49
URN: urn:nbn:ch:bel-bes-2053
Additional Information: e-Dissertationen (edbe)
BORIS DOI: 10.7892/boris.80957
URI: http://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/80957

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