Assuring property conformance of code generators via model checking

Abstract : Automatic code generation is an essential cornerstone of today's model-driven approaches to software engineering. Thus a key requirement for the success of this technique is the reliability and correctness of code generators. This article describes how we employ standard model checking-based verification to check that code generator models developed within our code generation framework Genesys conform to (temporal) properties. Genesys is a graphical framework for the high-level construction of code generators on the basis of an extensible library of well-defined building blocks along the lines of the Extreme Model-Driven Development paradigm. We will illustrate our verification approach by examining complex constraints for code generators, which even span entire model hierarchies. We also show how this leads to a knowledge base of rules for code generators, which we constantly extend by e.g. combining constraints to bigger constraints, or by deriving common patterns from structurally similar constraints. In our experience, the development of code generators with Genesys boils down to re-instantiating patterns or slightly modifying the graphical process model, activities which are strongly supported by verification facilities presented in this article.
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Sven Jörges, Tiziana Margaria, Bernhard Steffen. Assuring property conformance of code generators via model checking. Formal Aspects of Computing, Springer Verlag, 2010, 23 (5), pp.589-606. ⟨10.1007/s00165-010-0169-9⟩. ⟨hal-00644723⟩

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