Long a standard practice in traditional manufacturing, the concept of product lines is quickly earning recognition in the software industry. A software product line is a family of systems that shares a common set of core technical assets with preplanned extensions and variations to address the needs of specific customers or market segments. When skillfully implemented, a product line strategy can yield enormous gains in productivity, quality, and time-to-market. Studies indicate that if three or more systems with a degree of common functionality are to be developed, a product-line approach is significantly more cost-effective.
To model and design families of systems, the analysis and design concepts for single product systems need to be extended to support product lines. Designing Software Product Lines with UML shows how to employ the latest version of the industry-standard Unified Modeling Language (UML 2.0) to reuse software requirements and architectures rather than starting the development of each new system from scratch. Through real-world case studies, the book illustrates the fundamental concepts and technologies used in the design and implementation of software product lines.
This book describes a new UML-based software design method for product lines called PLUS (Product Line UML-based Software Engineering). PLUS provides a set of concepts and techniques to extend UML-based design methods and processes for single systems in a new dimension to address software product lines. Using PLUS, the objective is to explicitly model the commonality and variability in a software product line.
Hassan Gomaa explores how each of the UML modeling views - use case, static, state machine and interaction modeling - can be extended to address software product families. He also discusses how software architectural patterns can be used to develop a reusable component-based architecture for a product line and how to express this architecture as a UML platform-independent model that can then be mapped to a platform-specific model.
Review By: Stuart Margach 05/11/2006"Designing Software Product Lines with UML" emphasizes using individual components as building blocks to analyze and design single-software systems. Author Hassan Gomaa approaches families of software systems as a pluralistic model that takes advantage of reusing common functionality, architecture, and other shared aspects for economy of scale with software development.
In his overview, the author focuses on functional requirements across common features in the software family, desired features, and viable alternatives. This is useful, as some requirements will apply to a few products to devise a system.
Gomaa works from elemental concepts to define relevant aspects of product software lines, software reuse, and application engineering in order to create a working foundation for a product line. Chapter one discusses the basic frameworks that share common features. This chapter also emphasizes the advantages of system component reuse and presents modeling techniques derived from UML for software design.
By emulating the production line theme typical to manufacturing industries, software product line development has earned recognition and stature within appropriate development circles. Developers can address specialized or unique needs of customers by combining commonality in features and functional components--including the option for tailor-made applications. It is possible to take advantage of speed to market, economies of scale in production costs, and operational performance by employing the product line approach described in this book. Developers, students, and practitioners in the software industry can leverage the most current UML techniques and tools to harness the capabilities engendered within reuse of components, code, and design principles.
This book provides benchmark sample cases to best explain crucial methods of product lines. One key method is the PLUS (Product Line UML-based Software engineering) model that can be used as an accelerant for supplementing UML design capabilities beyond the reach of single-system development. Bearing in mind the exemplary standards and benefits denoted by the PLUS method, Gomaa explores the associated aspects of modeling, such as the use case and a number of diagrammatic methods that cater to product-line development. There is also a wealth of information on different pattern-based approaches to show how it is possible to generate reusable architectural platforms for many application combinations and types.
The objective of designing product lines is directed toward reusing requirements to code. While this objective was eagerly sought during early software development, it has only recently gained credibility. It is now possible to utilize the tools and techniques refined through iterative versions of the UML language--combined with superior modeling techniques--to achieve economies of scale from a commercial perspective and qualitative improvements in software design and development.
This book is a reliable and useful reference manual, complemented by practical case studies for software developers, students, and technical experts in the field. It shows us how product-line capabilities, when combined with the essential utility of the UML language, can enhance software application design and implementation into an exciting and promising realm.