Software & Systems Modeling

, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 209–231 | Cite as

PSL: A semantic domain for flow models

  • Conrad Bock
  • Michael Gruninger
Regular Paper


Flow models underlie popular programming languages and many graphical behavior specification tools. However, their semantics is typically ambiguous, causing miscommunication between modelers and unexpected implementation results. This article introduces a way to disambiguate common flow modeling constructs, by expressing their semantics as constraints on runtime sequences of behavior execution. It also shows that reduced ambiguity enables more powerful modeling abstractions, such as partial behavior specifications. The runtime representation considered in this paper uses the Process Specification Language (PSL), which is defined in first-order logic, making it amenable to automated reasoning. The activity diagrams of the Unified Modeling Language are used for example flow models.


Flow model Flow semantics PSL Process specification Control flow Data flow Concurrency UML Activity model Communicated by Steve Cook 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.U.S. National Institute of Standards and TechnologyGaithersburgUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Systems ResearchUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

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