Reef an autonomic design scribe
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Reef an autonomic design scribe l.jpg

Reefan autonomic design scribe

Piotr Kaminski

University of Victoria

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Modeling Quandary

  • Models are useful

    • for design exploration

    • for understanding

  • UML is the de-facto standard for OO systems

    • good for human-to-human communication

    • “UML as sketch” [Fowler]

  • Software is malleable

    • models lag behind code, can’t be trusted

University of Victoria

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Agility & Scribes

  • Agile software development

    • A little informal up-front design

    • Source code is the primary artifact

    • Small teams, short iterations

  • Scribes record, abstract, and communicate

    … offload documentation from principals

    … don’t get in the way

University of Victoria

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Reef Usage Scenario

University of Victoria

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Potential Benefits

  • Diagrams produced in small iterations

    • non-invasive, more accurate

    • design feedback loop

  • Lower documentation maintenance costs

  • Trustworthy documentation throughout the development process

  • Zero-install client

    • viral spread, service business model

University of Victoria

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Diagram Editor

  • Refinement-oriented GUI

  • Action amplification

  • Animated evolution visualization

University of Victoria

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Server Process Flow

  • All data in an XML DB, accessed with XQuery

  • Coupled static and dynamic fact extractors

  • Compound origin analysis

  • Incremental global heuristic diagram layout

University of Victoria

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Autonomic Scribes

  • Scribes

    • abstract an event flow into records

    • unobtrusively validate records with principals

  • Autonomic in two ways:

    • manage records according to policies

    • manage human involvement

      • skills, availability

      • communication channels

      • bother vs. risk trade-off

University of Victoria

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Piotr Kaminski

Graphic design by Kate Liu

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Why Not Eclipse?

  • Reef is not an Eclipse plug-in because of

    • reach and adoptability

    • front-end performance requirements

    • code proximity unnecessary (or detrimental)

University of Victoria

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Reef Architecture

University of Victoria

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How is it different?

  • Autonomic doc. actively seeks validation

  • Action amplification instead of explicit scripting

  • Target audience is primary developers, not maintainers

University of Victoria

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Modeling Quandary

  • Models are useful for understanding

    • but only if they accurately reflect the system

  • One size does not fit all

    • keep obsolete models around (status quo)

    • let obsolete models die (agile modeling)

    • maintain model religiously (formal process)

    • link model tightly to system (tripless)

    • the model is the system (model-driven dev.)

    • models on demand (reverse engineering)

University of Victoria