Once again, back home after the most exciting till date edition of the Code Generation conference in the latest years. The co-allocation of the Language Workbenches Competition has been a great incentive to attract all of us to join and present alternatives to a great challenge in the domain of modeling and code generation.
I want to celebrate it with the MDD community sharing my work on Essential(a tool designed for acquiring speed with Model Driven Development). On 11th may 2011, version 0.4.44 has been released as the first public beta.
Essential is a meta-modeling and code generation tool providing specific DSLs to define and consume:
Templates (using StringTemplate) &
Transformations (Model2Text and Model2Model)
With a strong emphasis on model interpretation, prototyping a code generation can be done in an agile way without the need of generating any infrastructure boilerplate or meta-editor plumbling accessories.
The main goals of the tools is to enable software architects to:
Prototyping software directly from models in a unexpensive way
Evolve theirs software architectures as fast as possible experimenting with design choices
Benchmarking and comparing architectures
For all of you interested in, feel free to try it, enjoy and provide feedback.
I submitted a proposal with Essential for participation in LWC11. It’s going to be a great forum for comparing language workbenches capabilities and the state of the art in the area. If interested, track the progress here LCW11.
During the last weeks I’ve been working a little, replacing the old Microsoft Oslo dependencies to MGrammar inside Essential to an alternative parsing solution. The MS Oslo and later SQL Server Modeling never passed from the CTP stage and finally were discontinued. Therefore, I couldn’t ship a product in such conditions and finally decided to change it.
When building a new tool for modelling and code generation like Essential, one has to rethink again what template engine use to drive all the machinery. In code generation contexts, template engines are a good field for innovation and your choice will be with you probably for the full lifetime of your tool.
In this post, I will try to introduce and explain why StringTemplate is a superb engine for doing code generation and why you should consider it if dealing with a code generation scenario. More… »
The Hello World sample is a nice starting point to show the syntax and capabilities of every new language. This test is also useful for code generators and Domain Specific Languages (DSLs) also as a proof of concept.
Following this honorable tradition, I have created a video showing the capabilities of Essential: the tool I am working on for doing agile Model Driven Development.
In this 10 minutes video you will get a general idea of the DSL the language provides to create:
and control transformations
In order to see the details, jump to Vimeo, activate the High Definition mode (HD) and set full screen (sorry embebed version is not good enough).