The NIBA workflow: From textual requirements specifications to UML-schemata
Usually, the development of an information system (or some part of it) starts with the phase of requirements elicitation and analysis which results in a set of natural language requirements specifications. These form the basis for the next phase, namely the development of a conceptual schema, which today mostly is done using the Unified Modeling Language UML. Both, the textual as well as the conceptual representations are not really appropriate for being thoroughly captured and validated by the requirement holders, i.e. the end users. In our approach, therefore, the textual specifications are linguistically analyzed and translated first into a so-called conceptual predesign schema, which is formulated using an interlingua, that is based on a lean semantic model. This allows the user to take part in the design and validation process. After validation, the predesign schema is mapped to an UML representation on the conceptual level. The sequence of these translation and transformation steps forms the NIBA workflow which has been implemented by means of a tool set within the framework of the NIBA project.
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