Posts by pjmolina.

LWC2011 list of participants disclosed

Angelo Hulshout has disclosed the list of participants taking part in the first Language Workbenches Competition to be organized on May 24th, at Cambrigde, UK. Just before the Code Generation annual conference.

Finally, I will also be there presenting Essential as a solution to the challenge. It’s a nice excuse to go there, just in case! :)

Now I can hear in the background the sound of knives being sharpened, nevertheless with an Olympic spirit. }:)

If you want to see the State of the Art of the next generation Software Engineering tools in action, don’t miss the opportunity and join us. See you there!

Essential submission to LWC11

As blogged before, at CG2010 a group of interest came up with a proposal for creating a Language Workbenches Competition and the first edition will be taking place in Cambridge May 24th, just before CG2011.

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.

StringTemplate: a great template engine for code generation

Paper Templates, licensed CC Attribution by Edinburgh City of Print

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… »

Hello World with Essential, the video

Essential Logo

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:

  • metamodels
  • models
  • templates
  • 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).

Essential IDE – Hello World sample from Pedro J. Molina on Vimeo.

More info about it and 12 usage scenarios in the last Code Generation 2010 presentation about Tailored Code Generators.

Share your impressions!

Language Workbench Competition 2011

Language Workbenches, as defined originally by Martin Fowler, are tools aiming to cope with DSL creation and code generation to increase the level of abstraction of software development.

Currently, the main efforts on MDD, MDE, MDSD (model-driven-whatever you prefer…) are focused in the development of this kind of tools perceived as a hot research area for Software Engineering.

In this scenarion, Cambridge, at Code Generation 2010 was the perfect place for sparkling the idea of promoting a contest to show and compare the advances of different language workbenches.

The Language Workbench Competition born with the objective to serve as a point of comparison between different tools in this exciting and fast moving area.

The competition is now open to the public. So anyone interested can enroll and implement the proposed challenge just published.

On the other hand, if you want to know more about Language Workbenches, modeling and code generation add this page to you bookmarks and come back in few months to see some proposals.

The promoters of the idea are: Markus Völter, Eelco Visser, Steven Kelly, Angelo Hulshout, Jos Warmer, Bernhard Merkle, Karsten Thoms and myself.

So this a call to arms but with sportsmanship!

Angelo and Markus has already started the calling.

Tailored Code Generators at CG2010

I presented the following talk: DSL and tool support for Tailored Code Generators at Code Generation 2010, at Cambridge, UK on June 18th.

It also was the public presentation of Essential: the tooling supporting my approach for applying MDD. I got a very good feedback from the audience and receive many request to test the tool.

People interested in beta testing it can still enroll here.

Introducing MDSD

My yesterday talk slides in Code Generation 2010 about Introducing Model Driven Software Development:

Essential drop

Essential is going to be presented this week in Code Generation 2010 during the session DSL and tool support for building tailored code generators.

To celebrate this milestone and give the chance to have more people trying it, an early version is going to be released for the people interested in.

If this is your case, please enroll yourself using the evaluation request form.

Nature by Numbers

Today I want to share an outstanding video found by my colleague Nico.

This kind of material always shock and amaze me!

When I was a child, I imagine how multimedia contents can effectively be more educational than just using the boring traditional books. I remember myself playing with animated GIFs to show the cyclic nature of the glucose and later on playing with Powerpoint, Flash, etc. to try to explain complex things visually. I prefer a good picture than a thousand of words.

Thereby, when I see a video like the next one I need to see it two or three more times till be able to close the mouth and that only happens just after satisfying my curiosity and gathering the full details. Math, nature and a piece of art, all in one.

Now enjoy it and turn on the full screen mode!

Nature by Numbers from Cristóbal Vila on Vimeo.

The three principles explained in the video:

Intro and the making-of.

After seen the video, and coming back from the off-topic, isn’t beauty to dream about that, may be, Nature is really model-driven… and actually has a complex and hidden metamodel governing it all?

All credits to Cristóbal Vila, Etérea Studios and his great videos.

¡Que bueno! ¡Maño! Me quito el sobrero.


Additional Model Driven bonus: Reviewing the making-of I found two visual models (DSL) (this and this using XPresso) describing algorithms in a visual form driving the animation in two scenes. Wow!

Presenting on Semana Informatica 2010

Enlace a semanainformatica.com

On April 27, my colleague Nicolas Cornaglia and I will be presenting a talk with some live demos in Valencia, Spain representing our company Capgemini, in the scope of the event Semana Informatica 2010.

The title of the talk will be: Productivity through frameworks and MDD.

The session will be delivered in Spanish. Full agenda (PDF version) and session details.

Abstract:

Business applications for Enterprise Software usually follows a fixed set of standards (global or in-house) to help in keeping the maintenance cost as lower as possible (reducing TCO). In this context, homogeneity and regulation compliance is frequently a must.

The main issue in our presentation will be to show how an approach based in a good framework, modeling tools and code generation techniques can be the right tools to achieve a high degree of standarization, quality, productivity and flexibility to evolve the Enterprise Architecture. Such flexibility is key to provide a better Time to Market when a business process change or a technical requirement suddenly emerges.