Automatability of Coupled Evolution of Metamodels and Models in Practice

Markus Herrmannsdörfer, Sebastian Benz, Elmar Jürgens. Automatability of Coupled Evolution of Metamodels and Models in Practice. In Krzysztof Czarnecki, Ileana Ober, Jean-Michel Bruel, Axel Uhl, Markus Völter, editors, Model Driven Engineering Languages and Systems, 11th International Conference, MoDELS 2008, Toulouse, France, September 28 - October 3, 2008. Proceedings. Volume 5301 of Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pages 645-659, Springer, 2008. [doi]


Model-based software development promises to increase productivity by offering modeling languages tailored to a problem domain. Such modeling languages are often defined by a metamodel. In consequence of changing requirements and technological progress, these modeling languages and thus their metamodels are subject to change. Manually migrating models to a new version of their metamodel is tedious, error-prone and heavily hampers cost-efficient model-based development practice. Automating model migration in response to metamodel adaptation promises to substantially reduce effort. Unfortunately, little is known about the types of changes occurring during metamodel adaptation in practice and, consequently, to which degree reconciling model migration can be automated. We analyzed the changes that occurred during the evolution history of two industrial metamodels and classified them according to their level of potential automation. Based on the results, we present a list of requirements for effective tool support for coupled evolution of metamodels and models in practice.