A Common practice between software development companies is the usage of software production methods (SPM) and CASE (Computer Aided Software Engineering) tools for software production. These methods guide during the software construction process by stating which tasks should be perform, which techniques should be applied in each task, the roles responsible for each task, etc. Currently, there are general methods targeted at the software development task (e.g., XP, RUP, waterfall, prototyping, etc.). However, all these methods, as well as the corresponding CASE tools, cannot be easily adapted to the specific circumstances that can arise in a development project (e.g., company size, budged, resources, etc.). This forces companies to develop ad-hoc methods to satisfy their current needs.
There are proposals for the construction of SPM and CAME (Computer Aided Method Engineering) tools supporting them. Currently, they haven’t been widely adopted by industry, mainly due to their complexity and lack of flexibility.
Thanks to PROS Research Center experience on method engineering, a new CAME environment called MOSKitt4ME has been developed. Compared with existing tools, the main advantage of MOSKitt4ME is that it speeds up the construction of SPMs that can be adapted to the current needs of each company or project, the MOSKitt4ME platform has been developed. This platform allows, in an easy and fast way, designing SPM and obtaining CASE tools supporting such method. The design of the method allows reusing parts of other methods and linking these parts with existing artifacts (tools, documentation, etc.). Specifically, MOSKitt4ME has been developed upon the MOSKitt CASE tool (www.moskitt.org) which is based on the Eclipse platform. This allows MOSKitt4ME to make use of the set of artifacts that have been developed both for MOSKitt and also for Eclipse, which can be used as components whitin the CASE tools generated with MOSKitt4ME. MOSKitt4ME automates parts of the CASE tool construction process by integrating and managing the artifacts that make up the SPM during for the execution of projects according to the defined SPM.
MOSKitt4ME is targeted to software development companies that are willing to make use of SPM adapted to the particularities of the Company. MOSKitt4ME allows them to:
- Design methods from scratch by reusing when needed portions of other methods
- Adapt existing methods by reusing when needed portions of other methods
- Construct CASE tools from existing methods by means of the integration of artefacts already developed.
The usage of SPM that are adapted to the particularities of companies allows us to make the most from the resources that are available in the company. Therefore, we can increase the productivity of the development teams and also improve the quality of the developed software products.