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Messages - AlexY

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Bugs and Issues / Re: Shalow copy does not work for object elements
« on: September 22, 2009, 09:06:18 pm »
I agree with Paolo.

Simon, your premise about "objects having only one digram scope" makes sense within frames of conventional use of objects in software design - to clarify a class diagram, if necessary (usually not), making object elements relevant only within a scope of one diagram.
As such, the conventional understanding of a role of UML objects in software design effectively makes objects and object diagrams second class citizens in UML requiring such "special treatment" like the "Deep" copy mode for objects, when all other elements are copied in "Shallow" mode.

I use objects as basic construct in bottom up reverse-engineering of exiting IT systems - a task far more common today than top down software design. I use classes and objects exactly as they were invented - classes to represent classes of physical and software objects and objects to represent concrete instances of physical/software objects/components/things.
The same objects appear across many diagrams and represent the same instances of physical/software objects/components/things. A Shallow copy mode is required to copy such objects.

I would suggest to expand the "diagram coping" function with one more mode - "Mixed" mode.
In this case it would have 3 modes:
- Shallow - copy all elements in Shallow mode
- Deep - copy all elements in Deep mode
- Mixed - copy classifiers in Shallow mode, instances in Deep (this is the current Shallow mode).


Bugs and Issues / Re: Shalow copy does not work for object elements
« on: September 21, 2009, 08:55:35 pm »
I have just submitted a bug report.

Bugs and Issues / Shalow copy does not work for object elements
« on: September 21, 2009, 03:22:23 pm »
Dear All,

When I copy a diagram in "Shallow" mode, EA copies Class elements correctly in the "Shallow" mode(links class images in the new diagram to existing elements in the model), but all object elements EA copies in "Deep" mode (creates duplicate elements).

Does anyone experience the same problem?
Is there maybe some "hidden" option I am missing?


Bugs and Issues / Re: Values of attributes in instance specification
« on: September 24, 2009, 06:39:19 pm »
Aha.. I was looking for something related to compartments.. :-)

For those who will stumble over the same:
"<right click on Instance Specification>|Advanced|Set Run State" allows to assign values to attributes defined in the Classifier of the Instance Specification.

Thank you, Simon!

Bugs and Issues / Values of attributes in instance specification
« on: September 24, 2009, 06:49:12 am »
As per IBM's implementation, instance specification notation (and as such element in the model) has slots for all features of its classifier, including inherited features and attributes can be assigned values.

In EA, I do not see features in instance specifications - not in diagrams nor in the Hierarchy pane. So my guess features are either not supported in instance specifications.. or I am missing something.

Bugs and Issues / Transparency of EA development
« on: September 21, 2009, 09:08:58 pm »
Hello All,

is there a way to know status of bugs and new feature request submitted to Sparx?


Uml Process / Re: Associated class traceability
« on: October 02, 2011, 10:10:35 am »

Thanks for your responses.

you have highlighted the fact that it isn't always possible via the GUI (or if it is possible I can't find it) to select the class part of an association class and find its association or the two classes at the association ends.
KP, do you suggest that it is possible to trace from ClassA to ClassC not though GUI but through the model? If yes, then this is exactly what I am looking for. Would you please explain the way if there is one?

What you have shown is probably how an association class is implemented in code or databases, but it is not the same thing.
Geert, so if what I have shown is possible implementation of association class in a code/database. How can I generate such implementation from the class model I presented, if there is no way to trace from ClassA to ClassC through the model? or there is? How? - this is exactly what I want to know..

Thank you for your help..


Uml Process / Re: Associated class traceability
« on: September 25, 2011, 07:41:08 pm »
Based on discussion of Association Class I came to conclusion that implementation of Associated Class in SparxEA is not correct.

SparxEA implements Associated Class as follows:
ClassA<-------->ClassB with ClassC being an orphan.

In the correct implementation, ClassA should not link to ClassB directly in the model. The ClassA and ClassB are supposed to be linked through ClassC with constraint that there is at most one instance of ClassC for every pair of ClassA and ClassB:
             1       1-n              0-n      0-1
ClassA <----------> ClassC <----------> ClassB

Question to UML experts:
Do you agree with my conclusion?

Uml Process / Associated class traceability
« on: September 25, 2011, 07:12:49 am »
Hello All,

When I browse the model created with the class digram below

with traceability browser, I do not see any links b/w ClassC and the rest of the elements in the model (ClassA and ClassB)

nor I am able to find any link between ClassC and the connector connecting ClassA and ClassB.

(1) Is there a way to trace from the classes A & B to class C (Associated Class) through the model in EA?
(2) Is such traceability b/w a Class and an Associated Class supported in UML at all?


Yes, it worked! Thanks, Luis.

QUESTION: I want the elements created by script to have TOGAF add-in properties. How can I do this? Thanks.
(Background information is below).

I use TOGAF add-in and need to import many elements representing physical application components.

The TOGAF add-in has a special element "PhysicalApplicationComponent" in toolbox intended to represent physical application - see image below..

The element has a set of TOGAF properties defined as tags - see the image below..

When add elements with script:
Code: [Select]
var thePackage as EA.Package;
var elements as EA.Collection;
var element as EA.Element;

thePackage = Repository.GetTreeSelectedPackage();
elements = thePackage.Elements;      
element = elements.AddNew( "Created by script", "Component" );
element.Stereotype = "PhysicalApplicationComponent";

The element created does not have TOGAF properties..

So, how to create an element which will have the TOGAF properties as defined by the TOGAF add-in?

Please help with Eclipse Add-in.

I am evaluating Eclipse Add-in.  I installed it yesterday and played a little  - I was able to drag-and-drop a file from Navigator (not Java code) in Eclipse into EA digram window in Eclipse.
Today, I am trying to do the same drag-and-drop again, but the EA does not allow to drag-and-drop from Eclipse Navigator anymore - Eclipse shows the round 'no-dropping here' sign.

This must be something silly - but I can't figure out what's wrong..
Any suggestions from the community?


I have a software product written in a programming language not supported by EA.. and want to model the product and view source code by F12.

Is there a way to associate source code with an element without use of EA reverse or forward engineering:
- from EA application UI?
- with automation interface?


I would have thought UML would be quite devoted to defining how complex systems can be structured to confom with class models.

My understanding that the paper actually proposes to model real system (or enterprise) and their parts (subsystem) as instances of classifiers - i.e as objects (instances of classes) in object diagram, and to do such modeling in parallel with building of domain model consisting of the classes of the objects.
Though such approach is one from obvious UML use cases, for some reason I have not come across descriptions of practical application of the method (apart from the paper referenced earlier and a few of other papers by the same authors written back in the end 90x and beginning of the millennium).
On the other hand, we observe efforts to achieve similar goals with profile based UML extensions like SysML and now with Archimate. The latter one is not mentioned as an extension of UML, but it is obvious that UML tool vendors utilize UML profile mechanism to get ArchiMate implemented.

In reading all the stuff I can about Archimate - I have not yet found a really cogent explanation that tells me "Well, you could use basic UML to achieve the same thing that you can model with Archimate - BUT HERE'S WHY USING ARCHIMATE IS BETTER."
This is actually the question I want to find answers to as well. what's wrong with UML that we need yet another modelling language? but I ask the same question in a wider context: not only why can't we use UML for EA modelling, but why can't we use UML for system modeling or business process modelling?

One from answers I am reading in Marc Lankhorst's at al. "Enterprise Architecture at Work" - the founding book on ArchiMate from language authors.
"The ArchiMate approach can be contrasted with he original approach in UML, which we describe in Chap. 2. In this approach, semantics was explicitly left out of the program. People who used the models could develop semantics for them, but a general semantics was not supplied. This approach stemmed from the origins of UML as a combination of three existing notations that did not have formal semantics. Hence, the focus of UML was and is on notation, i.e, syntax, and not on semantics. Although some of the diagrams of the more recent versions of UML have a formal semantics (see, e.g., the token-based Petrinet-like semantics of activity diagrams in UML 2.0), there is no overall semantics for the entire language.
We have taken a the opposite approach. We do not put the notation of the ArchiMate language central, but rather focus on the meaning of the language concepts and their relations. Of course, any modelling language needs a notation and we do supply a standard way of depicting  the ArchiMate concepts, but this is subordinate to the architectural semantics of the language".

Because UML is largely semantic-less, the modeler is in charge for defining of semantic for the notation he uses in his models.. Returning to the UML vs Archimate question - nothing prevents an architect to use ArchiMate semantics with UML notation.  Additionally, the notation can be extended with UML profile based extensions to be ArchiMate compatible (and I guess, this is what Sparx has actually done to implement ArchiMate in EA).
The same can be done DIY, but such a move,  comes at a cost that an architect needs to spend a lot of time defining semantics (if no Arhimate used), mapping semantics to notation, communicating concepts to his audience.

As a conclusion:
(1) Major value of Archimate is in semantics it defines. Understanding and common understanding of semantic is the hardest part in any more or less substantial modelling effort, and ArchiMate seems well-suited to help solving of the issue in the field of EA.
(2) It provides cross domain mapping of concepts, which no other language had in scope so far;
(3) As ArchiMare is being standardized (OMG plans & actions) and eventually (at this stage 50/50, but I would bet it will happen) it will lead to adoption of the language on larger scale with all benefits of standardization to follow (focused attention of best brains in the field, availability of tools & skills, overall growth of  importance of EA as a discipline).
(4) The alternative to ArchiMate is to use UML notation instead of ArchiMate with ArchiMate semantics, but this case involves getting some DIY job done to define the mapping b/w notation & ArchiMate semantics, which at least takes time.. and if UML & ArchiMate are available as a part of the same tool in my organization, I think it make very little sense not to use ArchiMate.

By advocating ArchiMate, seems I contradict to my yesterday's statement, but should note this because ArchiMate is not directly applicable to the kind of modelling I need to do right now, which is more software system bottom-up modelling in 1 domain or maybe 1.5 domains, rather than EA modelling in 3 domains (business, appl/data, technology).

I tend to agree with your conclusions about Archimate.

In the same time,  while looking for the "right mix" of tools for my current projects, which involve a lot of modelling of existing systems to reverse engineer the configuration & design, I came to conclusion that the best approach is to use "instance-based" UML models to model the existing systems.
After googling the idea I found quite interesting research on the topic. The authors describe such "purely" UML-based instance modelling approach to model systems & Enterprise Architectures.
One from papers can be found here:

(1) It seems to me you guys are on the similar path to use "pure UML". Can you please share references (if any) to the approach you use? or maybe describe in a few sentences?

(2) How suitable is EA to implement "instance based" modelling as described in the paper? Ideally, the the tool should support verification of instance model (system model) conformance to schema (domain model) and it would be even better it would do such a verification "real time" - i.e. at the time of adding of new element/relationship into the model and not as just an verification operation to run when the model is ready.
Is this implementable with EA? I anticipate that yes - EA should allow for this in this or other way, and I will look into this later.. but anyway, any information about the extent of the current support in EA, clues and suggestions about "how" would be very helpful.


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