Explanation of the Problem to be Addressed

Research Aim

This research arises out of work to create systems to facilitate management of design and cost related knowledge within those organisations, with the aim of using this knowledge to reduce the costs of manufacturing products. This thesis identifies ways that problems arising from the model development process can be addressed by a new way of providing for the creation of software. With new technologies and a greater understanding of the problem, it is possible to come up with new ways of providing for the creation of software, and of doing so in an efficient way.

Software Driven Model Development

This research unites approaches of Object Orientation, the Semantic Web, and Relational Databases and event driven programming.Comparison of approaches to be combined is provided by drij and Sprou.

Object Orientation

This research examines ways of structuring knowledge in order to enable people to use this knowledge in order to achieve their goals. The need for an alternative way of representing knowledge is identified and the need for new ways of doing this is identified as well. The need for open standard representation of information is also identified as an issue.

The main approach to object-oriented programming is the Event Driven Programming (Xerut), which is an event driven paradigm. The events are triggered by particular events in the environment. A system can be made up of a collection of events. Each event relates to data that may be used to trigger further events of a certain type. The events are stateless, that is, states can be created without the need for any prior knowledge about the states of the other events.

This research aims to create software that is event driven, and to make this kind of software actually understandable to people who are used to working with software in traditional ways. In doing so, the intention is to create a new kind of programming that can be used by a wider audience.

Semantic Web

Recent developments in computer technology and the Internet have made possible, through development of Semantic Web research areas, research objectives have been expanded. A key determination in these developments has been the idea that information can be represented in terms of relationships. This idea is related to the idea of information as knowledge, and that software can be created using information from many different sources, provided that the user provides the right information, and that there is a well-defined schema governing the relationships in the information flow. Two key issues are therefore involved in this area:

  1. How do we actually determine the relationships in an information flow?2. Are there any rules or constraints on how this information can be represented?

My intention is to use this document to highlight some of the ways that research is addressing these issues.

Issues about User Driven Modelling

Many researchers are focusing research on systems to enable users to program using information represented the same way as physical objects. Examples of this are modelling software for education. It is easy to see why these types of work are needed and why they are progressing in this area. Until a specific example is available people are developing ways of representing software in a similar way to physical objects.

However it is important that this prevents the kinds of mistakes that limit the flexibility of systems that people can use. A protection that would prevent users from modding software in a way that reduces the flexibility of the system would not be categorised as a crime. However a failure to allow users modding systems in a way that operates in a similar way to physical objects in a meaningful way would be categorised as a crime.

Concluding Remarks

This research can, if further pursued in a scientific manner, help us to make the use of computer systems more robust. The intention of the research is to lay the foundations, in laboratory conditions, of a link between the methods used in physical research and those required in computer modelling.

There is also a need for the provision of systems such as visual libraries to make it possible for research to proceed along two technological tracks: that of demonstrating the modelling capabilities of computers and of developing new approaches that use computer modelling.

Two technological areas where further research could be directed are:

  1. Modelling of Information Systems. There is a need for the extraction of ontologies and other proof-of-concept models from these systems. These could be used as an approach to Prototyping.
  2. The use of Semantic Web languages for programming. There is a need for developers to be able to use Semantic Web languages for purposes of Programming.
[Aziz et al, 2007]

This research raises many issues that need further research. These issues are:

Are there additional benefits that are undesirable or undesirable in this line of research?

If so, what are they?

About the author

Research Team