Characterizing Relations between Architectural Views

  • Nelis Boucké
  • Danny Weyns
  • Rich Hilliard
  • Tom Holvoet
  • Alexander Helleboogh
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5292)


It is commonly agreed that an architectural description (AD) consists of multiple views. Each view describes the architecture from the perspective of particular stakeholder concerns. Although views are constructed separately, they are related as they describe the same system.

A thorough study of the literature reveals that research on relations between views is fragmented and that a comprehensive study is hampered by an absence of common terminology. This has become apparent in the discussion on inter-view relational concepts in the revision of IEEE 1471 as ISO/IEC 42010 (Systems and Software Engineering — Architectural Description).

This paper puts forward a framework that employs a consistent terminology to characterize relations between views. The framework sheds light on the usage, scope and mechanisms for relations, and is illustrated using several representative approaches from the literature. We conclude with a reflection on whether the revision of ISO 42010 aligns with our findings.


architectural views view relations viewpoint architectural descriptions integration of views consistency models IEEE 1471 ISO/IEC 42010 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Abi-Antoun, M., Aldrich, J., Nahas, N., Schmerl, B., Garlan, D.: Differencing and merging of architectural views. Automated Software Engineering 15(1), 35–74 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Atkinson, C., Kühne, T.: Aspect-oriented development with stratified frameworks. IEEE Software 20(1), 81–89 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bass, L., Clements, P., Kazman, R.: Software Architectures in Practice, 2nd edn. Addison-Wesley, Reading (2003)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Boiten, E., Bowman, H., Derrick, J., Linington, P., Steen, M.: Viewpoint consistency in ODP. Computer Networks 34(3), 503–537 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Boucké, N.: xADLComposition: a tool for view composition in xADL,
  6. 6.
    Boucké, N., Holvoet, T.: View composition in multi-agent architectures. Special issue on Multiagent systems and software architecture, International Journal of Agent-Oriented Software Engineering (IJAOSE) 2(2), 3–33 (2008)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Bruneton, E., Coupaye, T., Leclercq, M., Quéma, V., Stefani, J.B.: The fractal component model and its support in java: Experiences with auto-adaptive and reconfigurable systems. Softw. Pract. Exper. 36(11-12), 1257–1284 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Clements, P., Bachman, F., Bass, L., Garlan, D., Ivers, J., Little, R., Nord, R., Stafford, J.: Documenting Software Architectures, Views and Beyond. Addison-Wesley, Reading (2003)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Cordero, R.L., Salavert, I.R.: Relating software architecture views by using MDA. In: Gervasi, O., Gavrilova, M.L. (eds.) ICCSA 2007, Part III. LNCS, vol. 4707, pp. 104–114. Springer, Heidelberg (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Dashofy, E., van der Hoek, A., Taylor, R.: A comprehensive approach for the development of modular software architecture description languages. ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology (TOSEM) 14(2), 199–245 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Dijkman, R.M., Dumas, M.: Service-oriented design: a multi-viewpoint approach. International journal of cooperative information systems 13(4), 337–368 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Dijkman, R.M., Quartel, D., van Sinderen, M.J.: Consistency in multi-viewpoint design of enterprise information systems. Information and Software Technology (2007)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Dijkman, R.M., Quartel, D.A.C., Pires, L.F., van Sinderen, M.J.: An approach to relate viewpoints and modeling languages. In: Proceedings. Seventh IEEE International Enterprise Distributed Object Computing Conference, pp. 14–27 (2003)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Dingwall-Smith, A., Finkelstein, A.: Checking complex compositions of web services against policy constraints. In: MSVVEIS, pp. 94–103. INSTICC PRESS (2007)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Egyed, A.: Heterogeneous view integration and its automation. PhD thesis, Los Angeles, CA, USA, Adviser-Barry William Boehm (2000)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Finkelstein, A., Kramer, J., Nuseibeh, B., Finkelstein, L., Goedicke, M.: Viewpoints: a framework for integrating multiple perspectives in system development. International Journal of Software Engineering and Knowledge Engineering 2(1), 31–57 (1992)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Fradet, P., Le Métayer, D., Périn, M.: Consistency checking for multiple view software architectures. SIGSOFT Softw. Eng. Notes 24(6), 410–428 (1999)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Garlan, D., Monroe, R.T., Wile, D.: ACME: Architectural description of component-based systems. In: Foundations of Component-Based Systems. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge (2000)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Giese, H., Vilbig, A.: Separation of non-orthogonal concerns in software architecture and design. Software and Systems Modeling 5(2), 136–169 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Hofmeister, C., Nord, R., Soni, D.: Applied software architecture. Addison-Wesley Longman Publishing Co., Boston (2000)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    IEEE1471. Recommended practice for architectural description of software-intensive systems (ANSI/IEEE-Std-1471) (September 2000)Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    ISO. Second working draft of Systems and Software Engineering – Architectural Description (ISO/IEC WD2 42010). Working document: ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 7 N 000Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    ISO. ISO/IEC 10746-2 Information Technology – Open Distributed Processing – Reference Model: Foundations (September 1996)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    ISO. ISO/IEC 42010 Systems and Software Engineering – Architectural Description (July 2007)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Jackson, M.A.: Some complexities in computer-based systems and their implications for system development. In: Proceedings of Comp. Euro. 1990. IEEE Computer Society Press, Los Alamitos (1990)Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Kruchten, P.: The 4+1 view model of architecture. IEEE Software 12(6), 42–50 (1995)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Melton, R., Garlan, D.: Architectural unification. In: CASCON 1997: Proceedings of the conference of the Centre for Advanced Studies on Collaborative research, p. 18 (1997)Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Muskens, J., Bril, R.J., Chaudron, M.R.V.: Generalizing consistency checking between software views. In: WICSA 2005: Proceedings of the 5th Working IEEE/IFIP Conference on Software Architecture, pp. 169–180. IEEE Computer Society, Los Alamitos (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Nentwich, C., Capra, L., Emmerich, W., Finkelstein, A.: xlinkit: a consistency checking and smart link generation service. ACM Trans. Inter. Tech. 2(2), 151–185 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Nentwich, C., Emmerich, W., Finkelstein, A., Ellmer, E.: Flexible consistency checking. ACM Trans. Softw. Eng. Methodol. 12(1), 28–63 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Nuseibeh, B., Kramer, J., Finkelstein, A.: Expressing the relationships between multiple views in requirements specification. In: International Conference on Software Engineering, pp. 187–196 (1993)Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    OMG. Model Driven Architecture (MDA)Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    OMG. Unified Modeling Language 2.0: Superstructure (August 2004)Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    OMG. Meta Object Facility 2.0: Query/View/Transformation Specification (August 2007)Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Oquendo, F.: Pi-adl: an architecture description language based on the higher-order typed pi-calculus for specifying dynamic and mobile software architectures. SIGSOFT Softw. Eng. Notes 29(3), 1–14 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Perry, D.E., Wolf, A.L.: Foundations for the study of software architecture. SIGSOFT Softw. Eng. Notes 17(4), 40–52 (1992)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Pinto, M., Fuentes, L.: Ao-adl: An adl for describing aspect-oriented architectures. In: Moreira, A., Grundy, J. (eds.) Early Aspects Workshop 2007 and EACSL 2007. LNCS, vol. 4765, pp. 94–114. Springer, Heidelberg (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Radjenovic, A., Paige, R.F.: The role of dependency links in ensuring architectural view consistency. In: WICSA 2008: Proceedings of the Seventh Working IEEE/IFIP Conference on Software Architecture (WICSA 2008), pp. 199–208 (2008)Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    Ross, D.T.: Structured Analysis (SA): a language for communicating ideas. IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering SE-3(1), 16–34 (1977)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Rozanski, N., Woods, E.: Software Systems Architecture. Addison-Wesley, Reading (2005)Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    Sabetzadeh, M., Nejati, S., Easterbrook, S., Chechik, M.: A relationship-driven approach to view merging. SIGSOFT Softw. Eng. Notes 31(6), 1–2 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    SAE: Society of Automotive Engineers. Architecture analysis and design language (AADL)Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    Tekinerdogan, B., Hofmann, C., Aksit, M.: Modeling traceability of concerns for synchronizing architectural views. Journal of Object Technology 6(7), 7–25 (2007)Google Scholar
  44. 44.
    W3C. XML path language (XPath),

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nelis Boucké
    • 1
  • Danny Weyns
    • 1
  • Rich Hilliard
    • 2
  • Tom Holvoet
    • 1
  • Alexander Helleboogh
    • 1
  1. 1.DistriNet LabsK.U. LeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Consulting software systems architect 

Personalised recommendations