, Volume 1, Issue 2, pp 177-203

Domain-oriented design environments

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Abstract

The field of knowledge-based software engineering has been undergoing a shift in emphasis from automatic programming to human augmentation and empowerment. In our research work, we support this shift with an approach that embedshuman-computer cooperative problem-solving tools intodomain-oriented, knowledge-based design environments. Domain orientation reduces the large conceptual distance between problem-domain semantics and software artifacts. Integrated environments support the coevolution of specification and construction while allowing designers to access relevant knowledge at each stage within the software development process.

This paper argues thatdomain-oriented design environments (DODEs) are complementary to the approaches pursued withknowledge-based software assistant systems (KBSAs). The DODE extends the KBSA framework by emphasizing a human-centered and domain-oriented approach facilitating communication about evolving systems among all stakeholders. The paper discusses the major challenges for software systems, develops a conceptual framework to address these problems, illustrates DODE with two examples, and assesses the contributions of the KBSA and DODE approaches toward solving these problems.