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Supporting Containment Checking for UML Behaviour Diagrams (CONTAINER)


For many software systems today, models are used to describe the behavior of the system. High-level and abstract models reflect the core concepts and expectations of the customers and stakeholders about the to-be built systems. These high-level models will be refined and enriched with necessary details in order to create operational software systems. As a result, it is crucial to ensure the consistency between the refined, low-level descriptions of software system behavior and the high-level counterpart throughout several iterations of design and development.

Containment checking is an emerging technique for ensuring the consistency between behavior models at different levels of abstraction by assessing whether the low-level behavior model embodies the corresponding high-level model. CONTAINER has developed novel concepts, techniques and tool support for containment checking of behavior models widely used in many areas of software engineering such as UML activity and sequence diagrams, process models and service choreographies. The project has investigated containment checking first generically for the named kinds of design models and studied the application in realistic use case scenarios, taken mainly from enterprise information systems. As a second application domain, CONTAINER has investigated applying containment checking in the context of architectural patterns, which impose various kinds of design constraints on the detailed design and implementation of a software system. The quantitative evaluation of the realistic use case scenarios shows that the proposed approaches perform reasonably well in typical working environments of software developers and scale well enough for typical sizes of software design models.

In a broader context, CONTAINER aims to better support developing high-quality software that is correct in relation to its requirements and specification. Largely automated checking techniques for complex and hard to understand potential software design problems – like those in focus of CONTAINER – are of great importance to improve the software quality. As our civilization more and more depends on software, the possible long-term impact of better foundational techniques that have the potential to substantially improve the software quality in a way that fits well into the typical workflow of a software developer cannot be overemphasized.


CONTAINER is funded by the Wiener Wissenschafts-, Forschungs- und Technologiefonds (WWTF), grant no. ICT12-001. 


The following publications related to the project have been published by our research group: 



Further details
R&D projects, public funding
2013 - 2017
Research Group Software Architecture
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Faculty of Computer Science
University of Vienna

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