Product-line architectures promise better productivity and less maintenance costs for families of related software systems. A strong product-line architecture is one of the keys to a successful deployment of both product lines and any system destined to go through multiple releases. However, specifying high-quality product-line architectures is a surprisingly difficult task.
Commonality and variability analysis is a powerful domain analysis tool for the specification of product lines. It can help designers produce systems that are robust in the face of change, and that can be easily customized. Additionally, it feeds naturally into OO design. This combination provides a proactive, systematic approach to accomodating changes in software.
This tutorial introduces commonality and variability analysis in a real-world setting. Topics include: underlying principles, methodology, and synthesis with OO design. By the end of the tutorial, you will understand how to use commonality and variability analysis in your OO projects to specify a stable, yet flexible, software architecture.
This tutorial is aimed at architects and designers of systems that have many variations, such as product families and systems with multiple releases.
Prerequisites: Attendees should have solid background in OO principles, and some OO design experience. Experience in specification or analysis is helpful but not required.
Lecture with exercises
Neil Harrison is a researcher at Avaya Labs, where he consults with software projects in architecture, process, organizations, estimation, and product line engineering. He has been involved in software patterns since 1994. He has organized pattern conferences and has taught many courses on patterns. He is a member of the Hillside Group board of directors. He has published patterns and chapters in pattern books, and was lead editor of Pattern Languages of Program Design, Volume 4.
Frank Buschmann is senior principal engineer at Siemens Corporate Technology in Munich, Germany. His interests include Object Technology, Software Architecture, and Patterns. Frank has been involved in many software development projects. He is leading Siemens' software architecture research activities. Frank is co-author of "Pattern-Oriented Software Architecture -- A System of Patterns" and "Pattern-Oriented Software Architecture -- Patterns for Concurrent and Networked Objects".