Formal Specification and Verification of UML Class Diagram Refactorings - Based on FGT Paradigm

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Emad Sa’adeh


Refactoring UML class diagrams for evolution are usually carried out in an ad hoc way. These transformations can become an issue since it is hard to ensure that the semantics of models is preserved. Our work in this paper explores the use of the so-called Fine-Grained Transformations (FGTs) paradigm as a formal specification and verification of UML class diagram refactoring. More precisely, the paper expresses UML class diagram restructurings in terms of atomic FGTs, which are considered to be the core of a refactoring system. The paper presents the feasibility of building traditional class diagrams refactoring (primitive and composite) from sequences of FGTs in a way that improves the structure and preserves the original behavior (semantic) of the class diagram. Besides the obvious benefits of providing rigorous specifications for refactoring tool builders and rigorous correctness guarantees, the paper presents many additional advantages and features of the approach. For testing, a refactoring tool FGTRefClass is implemented. Our experience shows that the tool facilitates the process to restructure class diagram models.

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