Meaningful Composite Structures

On the Semantics of Ports in UML2
  • Arnaud Cuccuru
  • Sébastien Gérard
  • Ansgar Radermacher
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5301)


UML2 composite structures are a natural solution for the basic modeling issues associated with component-oriented approaches. They provide mechanisms for defining reusable ”pieces” of design, which are well-encapsulated through explicit interaction ports. While intuitive in principle, the semantics of request propagation across ports may cause semantic ambiguities if the composition mechanisms are not used consistently, thus leading to meaningless composite structures (that cannot be safely reused within the context of a particular environment). To ensure consistent usage, this article proposes an empirical study that provides an intuitive description of composite structure semantics focusing on request propagations across ports. It supplements this description by highlighting cases conducive to semantic ambiguities and offers practical solutions and a rationale for building composite structures that avoid them. Among possible solutions, the opportuneness of encapsulating explicit behaviors in ports is discussed.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Bock, C.: UML 2 Composition Model. Journal of Object Technology 3(10), 47–73 (2004)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bruel, J.-M., Ober, I.: Components modeling in UML 2. Studia Jurnal 1, 79–90 (2006)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Faivre, A., Gaston, C., Le Gall, P.: Symbolic Model Based Testing for Component Oriented Systems. In: Petrenko, A., Veanes, M., Tretmans, J., Grieskamp, W. (eds.) TestCom/FATES 2007. LNCS, vol. 4581, pp. 90–106. Springer, Heidelberg (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Gaston, C., Le Gall, P., Rapin, N., Touil, A.: Symbolic execution techniques for test purpose definition. In: Uyar, M.Ü., Duale, A.Y., Fecko, M.A. (eds.) TestCom 2006. LNCS, vol. 3964, pp. 1–18. Springer, Heidelberg (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Haugen, O., Moller-Pedersen, B., Weigert, T.: UML for Real. In: Lavagno, L., Martin, G., Selic, B. (eds.) Structural Modeling with UML 2.0: Classes, Interactions and State Machines, pp. 53–76. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht (2004)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Oliver, I., Luukkala, V.: On UML’s Composite Structure Diagram. In: Fifth Workshop on System Analysis and Modelling (SAM), Kaiserslautern, Germany (June 2006)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    OMG. Semantics of a Foundational Subset for Executable UML Models RFP (2005)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    OMG. Unified Modeling Language: Superstructure version 2.1.2 (November 2007)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Robert, S., Radermacher, A., Seignole, V., Gérard, S., Watine, V., Terrier, F.: Enhancing Interaction Support in the CORBA Component Model. In: Rettberg, A., Zanella, M.C., Rammig, F.J. (eds.) From Specification to Embedded Systems Application. IFIP TC10 Working Conference: International Embedded Systems Symposium (IESS). Springer, Heidelberg (2005)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Robin, P., Robert, S., Sall, M., Berthier, S.: Market Enabler for Retarget-able COTS Components in Embedded Domain. In: Proceedings of the Embedded Real-Time Software (ERTS), Toulouse, France, SIA (French automotive engineers society) (2006)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arnaud Cuccuru
    • 1
  • Sébastien Gérard
    • 1
  • Ansgar Radermacher
    • 1
  1. 1.CEA LISTGif-sur-YvetteFrance

Personalised recommendations