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Model Driven Offshore
Model Driven Architecture (MDA) gave software modeling and software generation a new impetus. Developed by the Object Management Group, MDA succeeded in defining a framework for software engineering. To many of us, MDA is a familiar concept. First, a high-level system model is developed. Next, system requirements are modeled. Finally, with the system requirements acting as a base, the software is generated, rendering a complete and working application.
However, the MDA model is considered to be somewhat academic. This is why software engineers prefer to talk about Model Driven Development. Applying a model-driven approach can drastically enhance the whole software engineering cycle, from analysis through to maintenance. The application generator, for example, is already used during the system specification phase enabling working system versions to serve as prototypes. Designing and programming have been replaced by modeling and generating. Therefore, the software engineer no longer has to deal with cumbersome technical platform details, resulting in an improved productivity and improved quality, and a less complex application maintenance process.
One of the shortcomings of Model Driven Development is generating the business logic. Tools can nowadays generate software based upon data structure models, i.e. using Unified Modeling Language. They generate retrieve, update, delete and query functions, including key constraints, referential integrity, mandatory attributes rules, some validation rules, enforced update and delete constraints, browse synchronization between parent and child relations, and a default user interface. But these tools are deficient in handling the business logic. One of the reasons for this is the lack of an international standard for defining business rules. This implies that the business rules specifications have to be coded manually.
Business logic is usually specified in Word documents, and coding them is done by hand in, for example, C# or Java. As we know, programming in C# or Java is very labor-intensive and expensive when done in Europe. However, when something is labor-intensive, we prefer to source these activities in low-cost offshore delivery centers. This is how the Model Driven Offshore concept was born. It combines the benefits of Model Driven Development with the benefits of off shoring.
Model Driven Offshore – a pun or the near future?