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"Resolving Feature Convolution in Middleware Systems"
Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages and Applications
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 : Wednesday

Resolving Feature Convolution in Middleware Systems

Ballroom A-B
Wednesday, 11:30, 30 minutes


Charles Zhang, University of Toronto
Hans-Arno Jacobsen, University of Toronto

Middleware provides simplicity and uniformity for the development of distributed applications. However, the modularity of the architecture of middleware is starting to disintegrate and to become complicated due to the interaction of too many orthogonal concerns imposed from a wide range of application requirements. This is not due to bad design but rather due to the limitations of the conventional architectural decomposition methodologies. We introduce the principles of horizontal decomposition which addresses this problem with a mixed-paradigm middleware architecture. This architecture uses conventional decomposition methods to implement the core functionalities of middleware and employs aspect orientation to address orthogonal properties. Our evaluation of the horizontal decomposition principles focuses on refactoring major middleware functionalities into aspects in order to modularize and isolate them from the core architecture. New versions of middleware can be created through combining the minimum core and the flexible selection of middleware aspects such as IDL data types, the asynchronous invocation, the dynamic messaging style, and additional character encoding schemes. As a result, the primary functionality of middleware is supported with a much simpler architecture and enhanced performance. Moreover, customization and configuration of the middleware for a wide-range of requirements becomes possible.