Browse Prior Art Database

System and Method for Model Driven Development of Content Management Applications

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000021983D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Feb-18
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Feb-18
Document File: 5 page(s) / 226K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Disclosed is an invention to facilitate MDD (Model Driven Development) of a CM (Content Management) System. It provides a solution to make it more intuitive for the user to create a CM system by visually represting the system in a set of diagrams. It uses an EMF (Eclipse Modeling Framework) based meta-model for CM to provide visual modeling capabilities on the WSAD (Webshpere Application Developer) platform. MDD allows the development of a system in a way that the design phase is decoupled from the deployed system. This enables the model to evolve iteratively before "commiting" to the deployed system. This is a critical requirment because today's process requires the design to occur on paper, without the ability to use tools to collaboratively evolve the design. It provides a migration infrastructure to deploy or migrate a schema onto multiple systems. MDD gives the ability to deliver out of the box domain specific models that encapsulate best practices in the specific domain - this becomes an important leverage for application developers in terms of reducing startup time. MDD creates the path for effectively documenting the design during design time by coupling the MDD environment with web publishing tools. Maintaining documentation of the design as it evolves is another important advantage of this approach. A visual development environment, rather than the tree-based text view provided by current tools, makes development of applications much more intuitive and easy-to-use.

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System and Method for Model Driven Development of Content Management Applications

Background

This invention seeks to alleviate the complexity involved with management and design of Content Manager data stores. A CM application can have very complex data modeling requirements. Content Manager applications typically support a hierarchical data model with arbitrary nesting of components. An application needs to include support for different types of content and their relationships, such as links and folders. This situation can quickly lead to a system development process that is difficult to manage. Customers frequently express a need for a tool that makes it easier to understand and manage a large Content Manager system. This includes the ability to easily update documentation for the system. The invention addresses this requirement by creating a solution to make it more intuitive for the user to create a CM system by visually represting the system in a set of diagrams. Visual modeling is a powerful paradigm that is widely used for modeling applications and data. The invention also separates the modeling process from the deployment process to facilitate distributed, easy-to-use development tools.

The current process for modeling a CM system is to use the system administrator tool. The system administrator tool provides a mechanism to directly create, modify and delete data definition items from an existing CM system. This tool has an explorer-like user interface in which it is difficult to visualize the relationships between components defined in the system. Since the tool is tightly coupled with the CM system, it is impossible to implement iterative development. In addition, this lack of model-driven approach does not allow deployment of a CM schema onto multiple servers and does not allow integration with other development tools such as application code generation, documentation generation, or business rule constraint engines.

Description

This section describes a preferred embodiment using Websphere Studio Application Developer as the development environment together with Rational UML Visualizer with the Content Manager specific logic and semantics embedded in the Content Manager plugin to Rational UML Visualizer. Figure 1 shows the architecture of how the WSAD visual modeling environment would interface with CM through the CM plugin to Rational UML Visualizer.

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Modeling/Development Workstation

Repository

Enterprise Information Portal

Admin API

XDO/DDO API

CMBeans API

WSAD

Generated EJB

Model

Ge rne ate

Code Generator

Generate

Generated CM App Class

Content Manager

Reverse- engineer

Forward- engineer

Figure 1: Architecture of Model Driven Development

Figure 2 shows an activity diagram that shows the flow of actions in the model driven development environment. Upon opening WSAD, the user will be presented with the CM Workbench Perspective. The perspective will show a diagram surface with a toolbox, the CM Workbench mod...