February 21, 2008

Practical - end of first stage

The first stage of our practical on graph and model transformation is already finished. The students have produced nice class diagram editors with all three meta-CASE-tools. As expected, all tools have particular strengths and weaknesses.


  • Strong points: open source, integration with popular eclipse platform and EMF, wizards, tutorials

  • Weak points: difficult to realize nested packages, internal metamodels not documented very well (students sometimes had to consult the generated code to understand the differences of particular options), graphics cannot be defined in a visual way

DSL Tools:

  • Strong points: predefined skeletons, good documentation (in particular the book "Domain-Specific Development with Visual Studio DSL Tools"), good error messages, visual mapping between abstract and concrete syntax

  • Weak points: generated editors need Visual Studio, arrangement of the metamodel as a tree is rather confusing, nested packages difficult to realize


  • Strong points: good documentation, many examples, changes to graphics and metamodel on the fly, integrated code generator, nested packages possible

  • Weak points: generated editors need MetaEdit+, project portability, too many open dialogs in particular situations

The students have learned that domain specific languages can be realized with modern tools very conveniently.


Steffen Mazanek said...

Btw, none of these three tools does support free-hand editing as provided by DiaMeta.

Gaby said...

The three tools are very easy to use and very friendly. If you are interested in DLS, you must try them