Insights on the Use of OCL in Diverse Industrial Applications

  • Shaukat Ali
  • Tao Yue
  • Muhammad Zohaib Iqbal
  • Rajwinder Kaur Panesar-Walawege
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8769)


The Object Constraint Language (OCL) is a widely accepted language, standardized by OMG, for specifying constraints at various meta levels (e.g., meta-models and models). Despite its wide acceptance, there is a lack of understanding about terminology and purposes for which OCL can be used. In this paper, we aim to reduce this gap and provide guidance for applying OCL in practical contexts and we report our experience of applying OCL for different industrial projects in diverse domains: Communications and Control, Oil and Gas production, Energy Equipment and Services, and Recycling. Based on our experience, first, we unify the commonly used terminology in the literature for applying OCL in different ways for addressing diverse industrial problems. Second, we report the key results of the industrial application of OCL. Finally, we provide guidance to researchers and practitioners for choosing an appropriate meta level and purpose for their specific industrial problem at hand.


Object Constraint Language Industrial Applications Constraint Solving Constraint Parsing 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Iqbal, M.Z., Ali, S., Yue, T., Briand, L.: Experiences of Applying UML/MARTE on Three Industrial Projects. In: France, R.B., Kazmeier, J., Breu, R., Atkinson, C. (eds.) MODELS 2012. LNCS, vol. 7590, pp. 642–658. Springer, Heidelberg (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Ali, S., Briand, L., Arcuri, A., Walawege, S.: An Industrial Application of Robustness Testing using Aspect-Oriented Modeling, UML/MARTE, and Search Algorithms. In: Whittle, J., Clark, T., Kühne, T. (eds.) MODELS 2011. LNCS, vol. 6981, pp. 108–122. Springer, Heidelberg (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Arcuri, A., Iqbal, M., Briand, L.: Black-Box System Testing of Real-Time Embedded Systems Using Random and Search-Based Testing. In: Petrenko, A., Simão, A., Maldonado, J.C. (eds.) ICTSS 2010. LNCS, vol. 6435, pp. 95–110. Springer, Heidelberg (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Ali, S., Iqbal, M.Z., Arcuri, A., Briand, L.: Generating Test Data from OCL Constraints with Search Techniques. IEEE Trans. Softw. Eng. 39(10), 1376–1402 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Ali, S., Briand, L.C., Hemmati, H.: Modeling Robustness Behavior Using Aspect-Oriented Modeling to Support Robustness Testing of Industrial Systems. Software and Systems Modeling 11(4), 633–670 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Ali, S., Yue, T., Briand, L.C.: Does Aspect-Oriented Modeling Help Improve the Readability of UML State Machines? Software & Systems Modeling 13(3), 1189–1221 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Laddad, R.: AspectJ in Action: Practical Aspect-Oriented Programming. Manning Publications (2003)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Panesar-Walawege, R.K., Sabetzadeh, M., Briand, L.: Supporting the verification of compliance to safety standards via model-driven engineering: Approach, tool-support and empirical validation. Information and Software Technology 55(5), 836–864 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Behjati, R., Yue, T., Briand, L., Selic, B.: SimPL: A Product-Line Modeling Methodology for Families of Integrated Control Systems. Information and Software Technology 55(3), 607–629 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Iqbal, M.Z., Arcuri, A., Briand, L.: Code Generation from UML/MARTE/OCL Environment Models to Support Automated System Testing of Real-Time Embedded Software. Simula Research Laboratory, Technical Report (2011-04) (2011)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Iqbal, M.Z., Arcuri, A., Briand, L.: Environment modeling and simulation for automated testing of soft real-time embedded software. Softw Syst. Model. 1–42 (2013)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Iqbal, M.Z., Arcuri, A., Briand, L.: Combining search-based and adaptive random testing strategies for environment model-based testing of real-time embedded systems. In: Fraser, G., Teixeira de Souza, J. (eds.) SSBSE 2012. LNCS, vol. 7515, pp. 136–151. Springer, Heidelberg (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Iqbal, M.Z., Arcuri, A., Briand, L.: Automated System Testing of Real-Time Embedded Systems Based on Environment Models. Simula Research Laboratory, Technical Report (2011-19) (2011)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Iqbal, M.Z., Arcuri, A., Briand, L.: Environment Modeling with UML/MARTE to Support Black-Box System Testing for Real-Time Embedded Systems: Methodology and Industrial Case Studies. In: Petriu, D.C., Rouquette, N., Haugen, Ø. (eds.) MODELS 2010, Part I. LNCS, vol. 6394, pp. 286–300. Springer, Heidelberg (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Chiorean, D., Bortes, M., Corutiu, D., Botiza, C., Cârcu, A.: OCLE. (September 2009),
  16. 16.
    Hein, C., Ritter, T., Wagner, M.: Open Source Library for OCL (2009)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Drusinsky, D.: Modeling and Verification using UML Statecharts: A Working Guide to Reactive System Design, Runtime Monitoring and Execution-based Model Checking. Newnes (2006)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Egea, M.: EyeOCL Software (September 2009),
  19. 19.
    Aertryck, L.V., Jensen, T.: UML-Casting: Test synthesis from UML models using constraint resolution. Approches Formelles dans l’Assistance au Développement de Logiciels (AFADL 2003) (2003)Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Benattou, M., Bruel, J., Hameurlain, N.: Generating test data from OCL specification. In: Proceedings of the Workshop:Workshop on Integration and Transformation of UML Models at ECOOP 2002 (WITUML) (2002)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Bao-Lin, L., Zhi-shu, L., Qing, L., Hong, C.Y.: Test case automate generation from UMLsequence diagram and OCLexpression. In: International Conference on Computational Intelligence and Security, pp. 1048–1052 (2007)Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Clavel, M., Dios, M.A.G.D.: Checking unsatisfiability for OCL constraints. In: Proceedings of the Workshop: The Pragmatics of OCL and Other Textual Specification Languages at MoDELS 2009, Electronic Communications of the EASST, vol. 24 (2009) Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Kyas, M., Fecher, H., Boer, F.S.D., Jacob, J., Hooman, J., Zwaag, M.V.D., Arons, T., Kugler, H.: Formalizing UML Models and OCL Constraints in PVS. Electron. Notes Theor. Comput. Sci. 115, 39–47 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Brucker, A.D., Krieger, M.P., Longuet, D., Wolff, B.: A specification-based test case generation method for UML/OCL. In: Dingel, J., Solberg, A. (eds.) MODELS 2010. LNCS, vol. 6627, pp. 334–348. Springer, Heidelberg (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shaukat Ali
    • 1
  • Tao Yue
    • 1
  • Muhammad Zohaib Iqbal
    • 2
    • 3
  • Rajwinder Kaur Panesar-Walawege
    • 1
  1. 1.Simula Research LaboratoryLysakerNorway
  2. 2.National University of Computer & Emerging SciencesIslamabadPakistan
  3. 3.SnT LuxembourgLuxembourg

Personalised recommendations