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<h1 ALIGN="CENTER">How to process OCL Abstract Syntax Trees</h1>
<div class="summary">
<p>The Model Development Tools Object Constraint Language (MDT OCL)
project provides the building blocks for Model-Driven
tools to weave OCL declarative specifications into software artifacts.
We showcase some of these possibilities, taking as starting point a
plug-in to visualize OCL abstract syntax trees (ASTs) in the form of annotated trees. This
example motivates some practical tips about patterns for OCL visitors,
including using Java 5 generics and achieving conciseness by letting MDT
OCL take care of the &quot;walking&quot; order. To really reap the
benefits of OCL-enriched specifications, tools in our modeling chain
have to be able to transform such expressions into the target software
platform (e.g. compile into Java, translate into SQL). Work in this area
is summarized, to ease jump-starting your own OCL processing project.</p>
<div class="author">By <a
href="">Miguel Garcia</a>,
Technische Universität Hamburg-Harburg (Germany)</div>
<div class="copyright">Copyright &copy; 2007 Miguel Garcia. Made
available under the EPL v1.0</div>
<div class="date">June 28th, 2007</div>
<div class="content">
<h2>The building blocks at our disposal</h2>
<p>The Model Development Tools Object Constraint Language (MDT OCL) framework supports all the way from parsing a textual
OCL expression to evaluating such expression on some object population,
for both Ecore and UML2 models. This requires some infrastructure, which
MDT OCL provides as visitors for:</p>
<li>validating the concrete-syntax tree (CST) prepared by the
parser (such tree contains instances of <tt>OCLCST.ecore</tt>)</li>
<li>resolving identifiers to declarations, i.e. transforming a CST
into an abstract syntax tree (AST), whose nodes are instances of classes defined in <tt>OCL.ecore</tt>.
<li>evaluating an OCL AST, with <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.internal.evaluation.EvaluationVisitorImpl</tt>
being in charge of this</li>
The functionality listed above is accessed through a fa&ccedil;ade, <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.OCL</tt>.
Details will be given later, but a quote from <a
New and Noteworthy</i></a> is useful at this point:
<blockquote>The new <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.OCL</tt> generic
class is the focal point of OCL parsing and evaluation. Besides creating
<tt>org.eclipse.ocl.helper.OCLHelper</tt>s for parsing embedded
constraints and <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.Query</tt>s for evaluating
constraints, it can also parse OCL documents (text files external to the
<p>Although this article does not focus on concrete-syntax trees
prepared by the parser, two remarks are in order. First, CST classes are
internal, i.e. not part of the public API of the MDT OCL plug-in. And
second, the validation of a CST is actually performed by the same
visitor in charge of the CST to AST conversion.</p>
<p>OCL expressions cannot be understood in isolation, they always
appear in the context of some model element. Sample contexts include:</p>
<li>a class (all OCL invariants have a class as context)</li>
<li>a class property (for example, an OCL query to compute a
derived attribute has that attribute as context)</li>
<li>an operation (pre- and postconditions, <tt>body</tt>
The context of an expression determines which model elements are visible
in the expression. For example, the formal arguments to an operation can
be referred in a precondition but not in a class invariant.
The article <a
Model Integrity in EMF with MDT OCL</i></a> describes the JET templates that
take as input a user-written EMF model with OCL annotations and generate
Java method bodies that evaluate these expressions at runtime. So, what
else could be left to do? Actually, a lot. For example:
<li>we've carefully written OCL invariants to specify which object
populations should be ruled out according to the requirements (e.g. car
drivers younger than 16, a PC configuration with an under-rated power
supply). After code generation we may happily perform CRUD (Create,
Retrieve, Update, Delete) <i>yet the responsibility rests on the
developer to check whether invariants have been broken</i>. An efficient
mechanism to collect information in the background as updates are
performed would serve the purpose of flawlessly detecting invalid
snapshots of object populations.</li>
<li>again we've carefully written OCL queries, that we can invoke
as long as all objects reside in-memory. While ORM (Object-Relational
Mapping) engines contain optimizations to minimize the performance
impact of retrieving objects from a persistent store, the best of both
worlds could be achieved with the automatic translation of OCL into SQL
or into EJB3's query language.</li>
Links about these areas and a summary of work in progress can be found
at the end of this article. For now, we'll focus on the more humble goal
of depicting OCL ASTs (much like <a
depicts the AST of the Java compilation unit that's being edited). For
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/tree01.PNG" alt="OCL AST 01"></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 1</b> Visual depiction of
the AST for the invariant <br />
<tt>self.participants->forAll(c1, c2 | c1 <> c2 implies <></tt></caption>
<p>It could be argued that, if OCL is human-readable, why is an AST
view needed at all? The answer is that it comes handy not just for those
writing OCL-processing algorithms, but for everyone. Consider the
following unparenthesized invariant:</p>
<pre> = 'Silver' implies card.color = Color::silver and = 'Gold' implies card.color = Color::gold
</pre> How is it to be interpreted?
<table border="1" cellpadding="8">
<th>Like this ...</th>
<th>... or like this?</th>
( = 'Silver'
card.color = Color::silver)
( = 'Gold'
card.color = Color::gold)
( = 'Silver'
(card.color = Color::silver and = 'Gold')
( self.card.color = Color::gold )
<h3>Software configuration for this article</h3>
<p>This article assumes some familiarity with OCL syntax. The
examples shown are part of a case study (Royal &amp; Loyal) originally
discussed in the book <i>&quot;The Object Constraint Language.
Getting your models ready for MDA&quot;</i> by Warmer and Kleppe, as well as
in the following course notes:</p>
OCL Tutorial</a><br />
accompanying case study</a><br />
<p>Following the tradition of other OCL tools, the Royal & Loyal
case study is followed (its class diagram can be found in Appendix A).
Both <a href="./files/RandL.ecore">EMF</a> and <a
href="./files/RandL.uml">UML2</a> versions are provided . The R&amp;L model
contains samples for all OCL language constructs. We'll discuss some of
them in connection with our viewer. This model can be explored with any
editor that allows selecting model elements (e.g. the built-in Sample
Ecore Model Editor, or some graphical editor). The contained OCL
expressions can thus be modified and new ones added. You won't get
feedback on syntax checks with those editors (as the OCL annotations are
opaque to them). For that, installing the <a href="./install/plugins/OCLASTView_1.0.0.jar">OCLASTView
plug-in</a> is needed.</p>
<p><img src="images/tip.gif" width="62" height="13" alt=""> In
order to have an <tt>.uml</tt> file initialized with the contents of a
pre-existing <tt>.ecore</tt> file, you may do one of the following: (a)
right click on the corresponding Ecore <tt>.genmodel</tt>, select
&quot;Export Model...&quot; and then &quot;UML model&quot;.
Alternatively, you can (b) open the Ecore model, select the <tt>EPackage</tt>
you want to convert, and then from the &quot;Sample Ecore Editor&quot;
menu (in the main menu bar) choose &quot;Convert to UML Model ...&quot;.
You will need the <tt>org.eclipse.uml2.examples</tt> plug-ins to see
those menu options.</p>
<p>The interactive evaluation of OCL expressions against a
particular object population is not the focus of this article. For that,
the <a
Interpreter</a> delivered as part of <a
OCL</a> can be used. It accepts ad-hoc OCL expressions provided by the user
at runtime, also allowing serializing them to <tt>.xmi</tt>. This
document can be explored with the standard XMI editor provided by EMF,
however OCLASTView has been designed to display OCL ASTs in a more
readable format. A comparison can be found in Appendix B.</p>
<h2>Visitors are our friends</h2>
<p>The occurrences of OCL language constructs are internally
represented in ASTs as instances of the OCL &quot;metamodel&quot;
classes (depicted in Figure 2). In the AST shown in Figure 1, the root
is an <tt>IteratorExp</tt>. This particular iterator (a <tt>forAll</tt>
with two iterator variables) evaluates whether the boolean condition
expressed in its body is <tt>true</tt> for all pairs of items in the
source collection (the source collection being <tt>self.participants</tt>,
whose type is <tt>OrderedSet(Customer)</tt>). As a whole, this <tt>forAll</tt>
reports whether items with duplicate names exist. OCLASTView depicts
iterators with the source collection as first child, the iterator
variables as second child, and the boolean expression as third child
(just like the appearance order in the textual syntax). More diagrams of
the OCL 2.0 metamodel can be found in the latest spec by the OMG, <a
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/OCLMM.png"
alt="Fragment of the OCL 2.0 metamodel (only inheritance relationships shown)"></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 2</b> Fragment of the OCL
2.0 metamodel (only inheritance relationships shown)</caption>
<p>MDT OCL contains great examples of visitors for OCL processing,
e.g. to obtain the textual representation of an OCL AST (<tt>ToStringVisitor</tt>).
These visitors can be easily spotted in that they implement interface <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.utilities.Visitor</tt>.
<p><img src="images/tip.gif" width="62" height="13" alt=""> A
useful starting point for writing your own visitor is the abstract class
<tt>AbstractVisitor</tt> which shows how to visit children nodes for
each OCL construct.</p>
<p>Let's say we've got a reference <tt>myExp</tt> to an <tt>OCLExpression</tt>
(the root interface of the OCL metamodel) most probably obtained as a
result of invoking <tt>OCLHelper#createQuery(String expression)</tt>.
The <tt>OCLExpression</tt> interface extends <tt>Visitable</tt>,
therefore we can invoke <tt>myExp.accept(myVisitor)</tt> on it. Assuming
that <tt>myExp</tt> is the AST for the <tt>forAll</tt> expression in
Figure 1, and thanks to overriding, the <tt>accept()</tt> method in <tt>IteratorExpImpl</tt>
will be invoked, which in turn delegates to a handler for that language
construct in our visitor. Before getting to see the <img
src="images/tag_1.gif" height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt="">
default implementation of <tt>AbstractVisitor#visitIteratorExp()</tt>,
please notice that:</p>
<li>the usage of generic types in that method will be explained
<li>an OCL iterator expression (e.g. <tt>forAll</tt>) evaluates
its body for each item in the source collection. Such body refers to a
variable, a variable which takes as value (in each evaluation) one of
the items in the source collection. Incidentally, <tt>forAll</tt> is
special in that it's the only OCL iterator expression allowing more
than one variable, so as to allow Cartesian products. If you really
want to know more about what an AST node for the <tt>forAll</tt>
construct looks like, you may jump ahead to Figure 3, where its
metamodel class is depicted.</li>
<p>Coming back to the source code, first for <img
src="images/tag_1.gif" height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt="">
the default implementation of <tt>AbstractVisitor#visitIteratorExp()</tt>
and then for <img src="images/tag_2.gif" height="13" width="24"
align="CENTER" alt=""> its specialization in <tt>ToStringVisitor</tt>
(which overrides it to generate the textual syntax for the iterate
expression, the opposite process to parsing):</p>
<pre><img src="images/tag_1.gif" height="13" width="24"
align="CENTER" alt=""> public T visitIteratorExp(IteratorExp&lt;C, PM&gt; callExp) {
T sourceResult = callExp.getSource().accept(this);
List&lt;T&gt; variableResults;
List&lt;Variable&lt;C, PM&gt;&gt; variables = callExp.getIterator();
if (variables.isEmpty()) {
variableResults = Collections.emptyList();
} else {
variableResults = new java.util.ArrayList<t>(variables.size());
for (Variable&lt;C, PM&gt; iterVar : variables) {
T bodyResult = callExp.getBody().accept(this);
return handleIteratorExp(callExp, sourceResult, variableResults, bodyResult);
protected T handleIteratorExp(IteratorExp&lt;C, PM&gt; callExp,
T sourceResult, List&lt;T&gt; variableResults, T bodyResult) {
return null;
<p>The above implementation performs no processing at all, it just
visits all nodes. Instead, the <img src="images/tag_2.gif" height="13"
width="24" align="CENTER" alt=""> override in <tt>ToStringVisitor</tt>
returns a string of the form</p>
iteratorVariables</i> | <i>iteratorBody </i>)</tt> <br />
<img src="images/tag_2.gif" height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt=""> protected String handleIteratorExp(IteratorExp&lt;C,PM&gt; callExp,
String sourceResult, List&lt;String&gt; variableResults, String bodyResult) {
StringBuffer result = new StringBuffer();
String name = callExp.getName();
result.append(sourceResult).append(&quot;-&gt;&quot;).append(name).append('('); //$NON-NLS-1$
for (Iterator&lt;String&gt; iter = variableResults.iterator(); iter.hasNext();) {
if (iter.hasNext()) {
result.append(&quot;, &quot;);//$NON-NLS-1$
result.append(&quot; | &quot;).append(bodyResult).append(')');//$NON-NLS-1$
return result.toString();
<p><tt>ToStringVisitor</tt> needs only override <tt>handleIteratorExp()</tt>
to get its job done, as <tt>visitIteratorExp()</tt> takes up the
recurrent duty of visiting the owned parts, moreover passing such
results (<tt>String</tt>s in this case) as actual arguments to <tt>handleIteratorExp()</tt>.
In case the default visit order established by <tt>AbstractVisitorImpl</tt>
is not deemed appropriate for some particular scenario, its <tt>visit...</tt>
methods can be overridden. This is necessary for example when evaluating
an OCL <tt>if-then-else-endif</tt>: the else part is be evaluated only
in case the condition part evaluates to false. This is precisely what <tt>EvaluationVisitorImpl#visitIfExp()</tt>
<h2>Generics are our friends, too</h2>
<p>It's a fact of life that MDT OCL makes copius use of Generics.
However it's a small set of type parameters that's used over and over
again. With a bit of practice you'll recognize in a flash that <tt>C</tt>
stands for either an EMF <tt>org.eclipse.emf.ecore.EClassifier</tt> or
an UML2 <tt>org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Classifier</tt>. The complete list of
type parameters is described in the Javadoc for the interface <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.Environment</tt>
(reproduced below for ease of reference while reading this article). In
fact, there is a method to all this, and the Type Hierarchy helps in
visualizing it. <tt>Environment</tt> has two subtypes: <tt>EcoreEnvironment</tt>
and <tt>UMLEnvironment</tt>, where the correct type substitutions appear
for easy reference. Other types exhibiting the same pattern include <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.OCL</tt>,
<tt>org.eclipse.ocl.utilities.UMLReflection</tt>, and <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.utilities.ExpressionInOCL</tt>.
<p>The intriguing <tt>T</tt> type parameter in the code above stands
for the result type of visitor methods. For example, the declaration of
<tt>ToStringVisitor</tt> subclasses <tt>AbstractVisitor</tt> by
substituting the generic <tt>T</tt> return type with <tt>String</tt>. In
<pre>public class ToStringVisitor&lt;C, O, P, EL, PM, S, COA, SSA, CT&gt;
extends AbstractVisitor&lt;String, C, O, P, EL, PM, S, COA, SSA, CT&gt;
<p>Given that some types have specializations providing type
substitutions for Ecore and for UML2, a natural question is why <tt>AbstractVisitor</tt>
does not follow the same pattern. After all, one could type:</p>
<pre>public class AbstractVisitorEcore&lt;T&gt;
extends AbstractVisitor&lt;T, EClassifier, EOperation, EStructuralFeature,
EEnumLiteral, EParameter, EObject,
CallOperationAction, SendSignalAction, org.eclipse.ocl.ecore.Constraint&gt; </pre>
<p>(by checking what substitutions are used in <tt>EcoreEnvironment</tt>)
and then let the Java Development Tools perform auto-completion given
the start of a method name, for example:</p>
protected T handleIteratorExp(IteratorExp&lt;EClassifier, EParameter&gt; callExp,
T sourceResult, List&lt;T&gt; variableResults, T bodyResult) {
// TODO Auto-generated method stub
return super.handleIteratorExp(callExp, sourceResult, variableResults,
<p>This move is not as smart as it might seem at first sight given
that the very benefits of Generics are lost: any OCL visitor extending <tt>AbstractVisitorEcore</tt>
will only work on Ecore-based models, although it could have most
probably worked on UML2-based models as well. Bounded generics allow
writing algorithms which minimally depend on the types of the input,
while preserving static type-safety. That's the reason why <tt>EvaluationVisitorImpl</tt>,
for example, has no specializations: its methods work for models
expressed in either of Ecore or UML2.</p>
<table border="1">
<h3><font SIZE="1"> org.eclipse.ocl</font> <br>
Interface Environment&lt;PK,C,O,P,EL,PM,S,COA,SSA,CT,CLS,E&gt;</h3>
<dt><b>Type Parameters:</b></dt>
<dd><code>PK</code> - is substituted by the metaclass
representing the metamodel's analogue for the UML 2.x <tt>Package</tt>
<dd><code>C</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>Classifier</tt>
<dd><code>O</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>Operation</tt>
<dd><code>P</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>Property</tt>
<dd><code>EL</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>EnumerationLiteral</tt>
metaclass (<tt>Enumeration</tt>s are simply represented as
<dd><code>PM</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>Parameter</tt>
<dd><code>S</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>State</tt>
metaclass (for metamodels that describe state machines)</dd>
<dd><code>COA</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>CallOperationAction</tt>
metaclass (used in message expressions)</dd>
<dd><code>SSA</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>SendSignalAction</tt>
metaclass (used in message expressions)</dd>
<dd><code>CT</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>Constraint</tt>
<dd><code>CLS</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>Class</tt>
<dd><code>E</code> - corresponds to the UML <tt>Element</tt>
<dt><b>All Known Implementing Classes:</b></dt>
<dd>AbstractEnvironment, EcoreEnvironment, UMLEnvironment</dd>
<p>With this brief exposition to the OCL metamodel and the usage of
parametric polymorphism in MDT OCL, we set out to build our first OCL
<h2>First visitor: a visualizer of OCL ASTs</h2>
<p>A tree-based visualization of OCL expressions helps big time in
familiarizing with the structure of the different kinds of nodes in OCL
ASTs, and thus we will get that visitor to work first (a slightly more
sophisticated visitor, a simplifier of arithmetic expressions, comes
<p>We cover first the visitor itself (devoid of UI aspects), leaving
for the next section the plug-in extension that defines the view to
display the tree prepared by the visitor. This view mostly consists of
code generated by a PDE wizard. The remaining bits and pieces (how to
track the current selection in an Ecore editor, how to parse OCL, how to
display an XML document in a TreeViewer) are described in detail
<h3>What to do in the handler for a leaf node</h3>
<p>It makes sense to consider first what output we want for leaf
nodes in OCL ASTs. These nodes are recognized because <tt>AbstractVisitor</tt>
defines their handler to simply <tt>return null;</tt> no owned nodes are
visited, and thus no <tt>handler...</tt> method is defined for such
construct. In our case, we want our visitor to prepare an XML element to
show the node kind and type. Some leaf nodes have additionally a value,
e.g. all the <tt>...LiteralExp</tt> ones: they stand for literal
constants of some type. We will also display such literal constants as
attributes of an XML node. In summary, leaf nodes are handled by:</p>
public T visitVariableExp(VariableExp&lt;C, PM&gt; v);
public T visitTypeExp(TypeExp&lt;C&gt; t);
public T visitUnspecifiedValueExp(UnspecifiedValueExp&lt;C&gt; unspecExp);
public T visitStateExp(StateExp&lt;C, S&gt; stateExp);
public T visitIntegerLiteralExp(IntegerLiteralExp&lt;C&gt; literalExp);
public T visitRealLiteralExp(RealLiteralExp&lt;C&gt; literalExp);
public T visitStringLiteralExp(StringLiteralExp&lt;C&gt; literalExp);
public T visitBooleanLiteralExp(BooleanLiteralExp&lt;C&gt; literalExp);
public T visitNullLiteralExp(NullLiteralExp&lt;C&gt; literalExp);
public T visitInvalidLiteralExp(InvalidLiteralExp&lt;C&gt; literalExp);
public T visitEnumLiteralExp(EnumLiteralExp&lt;C, EL&gt; literalExp);
public T visitUnlimitedNaturalLiteralExp(UnlimitedNaturalLiteralExp<c> literalExp)
<p>These are the methods we'll implement first in class <a
which extends <tt>AbstractVisitor</tt> and that imports classes from the
MDT OCL plug-in (the plug-ins that OCLASTView depends on are shown in
Figure 11 below)</p>
<p>Method <img src="images/tag_3.gif" height="13" width="24"
align="CENTER" alt=""> <tt>visitVariableExp()</tt> in <tt>XMLforOCL</tt>
handles usages of variables in OCL. <tt>VariableExp</tt> references the
declaration of the referred variable, i.e. it references a <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.expressions.Variable&lt;C,
<img src="images/tag_3.gif" height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt=""> public Element visitVariableExp(VariableExp&lt;C, PM&gt; v) {
Variable&lt;C, PM&gt; vd = v.getReferredVariable();
Element res = new Element(&quot;VariableExp&quot;); //$NON-NLS-1$
res.setAttribute(&quot;name&quot;, vd.getName()); //$NON-NLS-1$
addTypeInfo(res, v);
return res;
private void addTypeInfo(org.jdom.Element res, TypedElement&lt;C&gt; exp) {
C ec = exp.getType();
String tName = getName(ec);
res.setAttribute(&quot;type&quot;, tName); //$NON-NLS-1$
</pre> An OCL expression may contain literals for primitive datatypes (Real,
Integer, Boolean, String). A handler for such occurrences of literals in
an AST node typically looks like: <pre>
public Element visitRealLiteralExp(RealLiteralExp&lt;C&gt; literalExp) {
Element res = new Element(&quot;RealLiteralExp&quot;); //$NON-NLS-1$
res.setAttribute(&quot;symbol&quot;, Double.toString(literalExp.getRealSymbol())); //$NON-NLS-1$
return res;
</pre> Two novelties of OCL 2.0 are the built-in literal values <tt>null</tt>
and <tt>OclInvalid</tt> which may appear in the textual syntax. In
general, an expression any of whose arguments is <tt>OclInvalid</tt>
evaluates to <tt>OclInvalid</tt>, that value propagates during
evaluation much like <tt>NULL</tt> does in SQL. By including an
invocation to <tt>addTypeInfo()</tt> our handlers will reveal what the
types of those literal values are (and they better have one, as OCL is a
strongly-typed language). The instances returned are maintained by MDT
OCL, they are part of the <i>symbol tables</i> (in
compiler-implementation terminology) and form part of the bookkeeping
required to parse, validate against <i>static semantics</i>, and
transform OCL expressions.
<h3>What to do in the handlers for non-leaf nodes</h3>
<p>According to our definition, non-leaf nodes are those whose
metamodel class defines one or more containment associations, as for
example <tt>IfExp</tt>, <tt>IterateExp</tt>, and <tt>IteratorExp</tt>:</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/IfExp.PNG"
alt=" Containment associations for IfExp and LoopExp "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 3</b> Containment
associations for <tt>IfExp</tt> and <tt>LoopExp</tt></caption>
<p>The <tt>XMLforOCL</tt> handler of <tt>IfExp</tt> simply pieces
together the results of visiting the owned parts (just like <tt>ToStringVisitor</tt>
does). These results (<tt>conditionResult</tt>, <tt>thenResult</tt>, and
<tt>elseResult</tt>) are never null because according to the
well-formedness rules of OCL an <tt>IfExp</tt> must have those three
parts and visitors are coded under the assumption of well-formed input.
Notice also that had not been <tt>org.jdom.Element</tt> substituted for
the type parameter <tt>T</tt>, the visitor would have resorted to
explicit type-casts (downcasts from <tt>Object</tt> to <tt>Element</tt>).
Generics instead enable compile-time type-checking.</p>
protected org.jdom.Element handleIfExp(IfExp<c> ifExp, Element conditionResult,
Element thenResult, Element elseResult) {
Element res = new Element(&quot;IfExp&quot;); //$NON-NLS-1$
Element eConditionPart = new Element(&quot;condition&quot;); //$NON-NLS-1$
Element eThenPart = new Element(&quot;then&quot;); //$NON-NLS-1$
Element eElsePart = new Element(&quot;else&quot;); //$NON-NLS-1$
return res;
<h3>What sets <tt>CallExp</tt> and its subtypes apart from the rest</h3>
<p>We've written handlers returning <tt>org.jdom.Element</tt> for
several OCL constructs by considering them in isolation, without
worrying about other sub-expressions in the whole OCL expression. This
we can make for <tt>IfExp</tt>, the <tt>...LiteralExp</tt>, and in
general for metamodel classes which are not subtypes of <tt>CallExp</tt>,
as a <tt>CallExp</tt> further evaluates some <i>source expression</i>
which can be obtained with <tt>getSource()</tt>. For example, the
metamodel in Figure 2 shows that a <tt>PropertyCallExp</tt> is a subtype
of <tt>CallExp</tt>. That explains why we can write: <tt>self.age
>= 18</tt>, where <tt>age</tt> stands for an attribute. (The <tt>VariableExp</tt>
<tt>self</tt> is its source expression). What EMF calls <tt>EStructuralFeature</tt>
(an attribute or a reference) OCL calls <i>property</i>, also in
agreement with UML terminology.</p>
<p>In terms of OCL visitors this means that for each instance of <tt>CallExp</tt>
its source expression should be visited, and the <tt>visit...</tt>
methods in <tt>AbstractVisitor</tt> do just that. This behavior was
already shown in <img src="images/tag_1.gif" height="13" width="24"
align="CENTER" alt=""> and <img src="images/tag_2.gif"
height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt="">, the default AST
visitor and the serializer into textual representation, respectively.
The root node in Figure 1 has <tt>&lt;source&gt;</tt> as a subnode only
because in our overridden <tt>handleIteratorExp</tt> the following was
Element sourceE = new Element(&quot;source&quot;);
<p>Other OCL constructs owning sub-expressions occur in connection
with the initializers of variables and the arguments of operation calls.
As a sidenote, in programming-language parlance, OCL's
&quot;source&quot; is usually called &quot;target&quot;, while in OCL <tt>MessageExp</tt>s
the target is actually named &quot;target&quot;.</p>
<h3>Things we swept under the carpet</h3>
<p>We've overridden so far the methods highlighted in Figure 4. The
remaining ones follow the same principles and can be found in the
finished <a href="./files/oclastview/"><tt>XMLforOCL</tt></a>.
<p>Exploring the list of not-yet-implemented methods reveals a type
that cannot be found in the fragment of the OCL metamodel depicted in
Figure 2 (<tt>TupleLiteralPart</tt>). Implementing another method (<tt>visitCollectionLiteralExp()</tt>)
reveals a containment association to types also not shown in Figure 2 (<tt>CollectionItem</tt>
and <tt>CollectionRange</tt>, taken together the only subtypes of <tt>CollectionLiteralPart</tt>,
also not shown in Figure 2). Finally, we've implemented a handler (<tt>visitVariable()</tt>)
for a type nowhere to be found in Figure 2. What's going on? As Figure 5
shows, not all OCL constructs have counterparts subtyping <tt>OCLExpression</tt>
in the metamodel (Figure 2 depicts only the classes branching off from <tt>OCLExpression</tt>).
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<tr valign="bottom">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/overriddenSoFar.PNG" alt="Methods
making up our><tt>XMLforOCL</tt> visitor so far ">
<p /><b>Figure 4</b> Public methods overridden in <tt>XMLforOCL</tt>
so far
<td><img src="images/myPNG/wholeStoryAboutTheOCLMM.PNG"
alt=" aa ">
<p /><b>Figure 5</b> The whole story about the OCL metamodel: <br />
not all OCL language constructs subtype <tt>OCLExpression</tt>
<p>To complete the picture on visiting <tt>Variable</tt>s, version
1.1 of MDT OCL introduces the <tt>ExpressionInOcl</tt> metaclass
(described in Chapter 12 of the <a
href="">OCL spec</a>).
This metaclass does not subtype <tt>TypedElement</tt> but <tt>Visitable</tt>
and constitutes the container for context variables (<tt>self</tt>, <tt>result</tt>)
and for those variables standing for operation parameters (if any). As
for other OCL constructs, <tt>AbstractVisitor#visitExpressionInOCL()</tt>
will visit those owned parts, passings the results to <tt>AbstractVisitor#handleExpressionInOCL()</tt>.
<h3>Variables and environments: how they show up in OCL ASTs</h3>
<p>Navigation in OCL expressions as enabled by <tt>CallExp</tt> is
very useful. Some constructs however must serve as anchors, i.e. they
have no source expression themselves. We've met some of them already:
all the <tt>...LiteralExp</tt> ones, <tt>VariableExp</tt>, <tt>IfExp</tt>,
and <tt>LetExp</tt>. The remaining constructs without a source share the
property of being subtypes of <tt>OCLExpression</tt> but not of <tt>CallExp</tt>:
<tt>TypeExp</tt>, <tt>UnspecifiedValueExp</tt>, <tt>StateExp</tt>, and <tt>MessageExp</tt>.
<p>There's a distinction between <tt>VariableExp</tt> and <tt>Variable</tt>,
the former denotes a usage and the latter a declaration. The declaration
for a usage is accessible through <tt>VariableExp#getReferredVariable()</tt>.
The AST builder in MDT OCL makes available as pre-defined some variables
in some OCL expression contexts:</p>
<li><tt>self</tt> in classifier and operation contexts</li>
<li>a variable for each formal argument in an operation context</li>
<li><tt>result</tt> in the postcondition context of an operation.
<li>Additionally, <tt>@pre</tt> may postfix in the postcondition
context a property, to indicate the value it had before execution of
the operation. More in detail, the <tt>FeatureCallExp</tt> metaclass
defines the <tt>isMarkedPre</tt> property. Unfortunately, Section 8.3.2
&quot;FeatureCall Expressions&quot; of the <a
href="">OCL spec</a>
omits the description of the <tt>FeatureCallExp</tt> metamodel class.
More importantly, a <tt>VariableExp</tt> cannot be marked with <tt>@pre</tt>
because variables (such as operation parameters or <tt>Let</tt>
variables) don't exist before the invocation of the operation (thanks
to Christian W. Damus for these observations).</li>
<p>The constructs <tt>let</tt>, all the iterators (<tt>IteratorExp</tt>)
and <tt>iterate</tt> (<tt>IterateExp</tt>) allow defining (sometimes
implicit) variables. For example, Figure 1 shows the <tt>forAll</tt>
iterator defining two explicit variables (<tt>c1</tt>, <tt>c2</tt>).
Implicit iterator variables instead are nowhere to be seen in the
textual syntax, thus contributing to its conciseness, but are revealed
by the AST builder anyway. For example, Figure 6 depicts the invariant</p>
<p><tt>participants-&gt;forAll(age() <= 70)</tt></p>
<p>where both <tt>self</tt> and the iterator variable over the <tt>participants</tt>
collection are implicit. In the AST tree view the explicit declaration
of the iterator variable (<tt>temp20</tt>) is shown in red, and its
usage in green (Figure 6).</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/implicitIteratorVar.PNG"
alt="Implicit iterator variable "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 6</b> Implicit iterator
variable (<tt>temp20</tt>)</caption>
<p>Moreover, the OCL syntax allows for a <tt>collect</tt> iterator
to be elided from the textual syntax, to support the intuitive concept
of &quot;dot navigation&quot;. This feature can be seen at work in
Figure 7.</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/elidedCollect.PNG"
alt="Elided collect "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 7</b> Elided <tt>collect</tt>
<p>With some more work, the OCL AST visualizer can be extended to
show the variables available in the current environment of a
<p>The following section covers GUI issues, setting the ground for
covering later our last visitor, a simplifier of arithmetic expressions.</p>
<h2>The UI for OCL visitors</h2>
<p>We'll use the same UI mechanisms for all the visitors in this
article: a TreeViewer to display an XML document. The only differences
will be in the document to build and how it's built. As first step, we
activate the wizard File &gt; New &gt; Plug-in Project, and make the
choices shown in Figures 8 to 10.</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/PDEwizard.PNG"
alt="Step 1 of PDE Wizard to create the OCLASTView plug-in "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 8</b> Step of the PDE
Wizard to create the OCLASTView plug-in</caption>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/PDEwizard2.PNG"
alt="Step of PDE Wizard to create the OCLASTView plug-in "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 9</b> Step of the PDE
Wizard to create the OCLASTView plug-in</caption>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/PDEwizard3.PNG"
alt="Step of PDE Wizard to create the OCLASTView plug-in "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 10</b> Step of the PDE
Wizard to create the OCLASTView plug-in</caption>
<p>In the just created plugin.xml the dependencies shown in Figure
11 are added:</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/oclDependency.PNG"
alt="Dependencies of the OCLASTView plug-in "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 11</b> Dependencies of the
OCLASTView plug-in</caption>
<h3>Making OCLASTView track the current editor selection</h3>
<p>In its current state, the view generated by the wizard can be
shown alongside the Ecore or UML editor we've chosen yet it is unaware
about the current selection. We want it instead to display the XML tree
so laboriously built for an OCL-annotated operation or classifier. Some
classes cherry-picked from other plug-ins save the day (they've been
placed in the <tt>util</tt> package in the source code of <a
<li><tt>JDomContentProvider</tt> and <tt>JDomLabelProvider</tt>,
reproduced from the BSD-licensed <a
<p>Finally, we make the view implement <tt>ISelectionListener</tt>
with <tt>selectionChanged()</tt> checking whether a valid context has
been selected (an operation or a classifier, to later check whether that
context has a valid OCL annotation. At the XMI level, an OCL annotation
looks as shown in Figure 12:</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/oclAtXMIlevel.PNG"
alt="OCL Annotation "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 12</b> How an OCL
annotation really looks in an .ecore file</caption>
<p>Using the Sample Ecore editor the same OCL invariant looks as
shown in Figure 13:</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/oclAtECoreEditorLevel.PNG"
alt="OCL Annotation "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 13</b> More human oriented
view of an OCL expression in the Ecore Sample Editor</caption>
<p>Go ahead and click operations at will, the <a
will get notified and will update the view as a result of parsing the
string containing the OCL expression and visiting it (debug for
increased thrill)</p>
private Element displayOCL(String expression, EObject context, String key) {
org.eclipse.ocl.OCL ocl = null;
org.eclipse.ocl.helper.OCLHelper helper = null;
Element res = new Element(key);
res.setAttribute(&quot;textualInput&quot;, expression);
if (context instanceof org.eclipse.uml2.uml.NamedElement) {
ocl = org.eclipse.ocl.uml.OCL.newInstance();
} else {
ocl = org.eclipse.ocl.ecore.OCL.newInstance();
helper = ocl.createOCLHelper();
// set our helper's context object to parse against it
if ((context instanceof org.eclipse.emf.ecore.EClass)
|| (context instanceof org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Classifier)) {
} else if (context instanceof org.eclipse.emf.ecore.EOperation) {
EOperation eOp = (EOperation) context;
helper.setOperationContext(eOp.getEContainingClass(), eOp);
} else if (context instanceof org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Operation) {
org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Operation op = (org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Operation) context;
helper.setOperationContext(op.getOwner(), op);
} else if (context instanceof org.eclipse.emf.ecore.EStructuralFeature) {
EStructuralFeature sf = (EStructuralFeature) context;
helper.setAttributeContext(sf.getEContainingClass(), sf);
} else if (context instanceof org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Property) {
org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Property p = (org.eclipse.uml2.uml.Property) context;
helper.setAttributeContext(p.getOwner(), p);
OCLExpression&lt;EClassifier&gt; oclExp = null;
Element xmlAST = null;
try {
oclExp = helper.createQuery(expression);
} catch (Exception e) {
xmlAST = reportException(e);
return res;
XMLforOCL xfo = null;
if (context instanceof org.eclipse.uml2.uml.NamedElement) {
xfo = XMLforOCL.getUML2Version();
} else {
xfo = XMLforOCL.getEcoreVersion();
try {
<img src="images/tag_4.gif" height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt=""> xmlAST = (Element) oclExp.accept(xfo);
} catch (Exception e) {
xmlAST = reportException(e);
return res;
<h3>Using OCLASTView with Ecore editors</h3>
<p>Just to show that it's possible, the figure below depicts the
example Ecore editor provided by GMF triggering an update of OCLASTView:</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/fromGMFEcoreEditor.PNG"
alt="Using OCLASTView with GMF's Ecore editor "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 14</b> Using OCLASTView
with GMF's Ecore editor</caption>
<p><a href="">Emfatic</a>
can also be used to edit an OCL-annotated Ecore model, yet its Outline
view does not provide an <tt>EOperation</tt> selection. Emfatic makes
however for quick editing of OCL expressions themselves, as depicted in
Figure 15. Additionally, a new version of Emfatic is being developed.
For details check <a
this document</a>. The new features include: syntax to account for EMF
Generics, folding, hovers displaying the declaration of the element
under the cursor, hyperlinks, AutoEdits, templates, and Type Hierarchy,
among others.</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/oclAtEmfaticLevel.PNG"
alt="OCL Annotation "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 15</b> OCL expression in
<h3>Using OCLASTView with UML editors</h3>
Tools</a> consists of a set of GMF-based editors for viewing and editing UML
models. A diagram similar to that shown in Figure 16 can be obtained by
right-clicking on <a href="./files/RandL.uml">the UML version of
Royal &amp; Loyal</a> and choosing &quot;Initialize umlclass_diagram&quot;.
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/fromUML2ToolsEditors.PNG"
alt="Using OCLASTView with UML2 Tools editor "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 16</b> Using OCLASTView
with the UML2 Tools editor</caption>
<p>OCLASTView also works with the built-in UML Model Editor, as
shown below:</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/myPNG/fromUMLModelEditor.PNG"
alt="Using OCLASTView with the UML Model Editor "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 17</b> Using OCLASTView
with the UML Model Editor</caption>
<h2>Second visitor: simplification of arithmetic expressions
involving literal constants only</h2>
<p>Whether an OCL expression is interpreted or compiled, one way to
make OCL evaluation faster consists in computing at <i>compile-time</i>
as much as possible of the expression, as a result of analyses such as <i>constant
folding</i> or <i>strength reduction</i> or <i>common sub-expression
elimination</i> or <i>partial redundancy elimination</i>
(compiler-implementation terminology, for an overview see <a
Hailperin's course notes</a>) or <i>partial evaluation</i> (functional
programming terminology). We will tap into this area by showcasing a
visitor to clone an input OCL expression, except that arithmetic
sub-expressions involving only literal constants will be reduced to
their final result.</p>
<p>This is actually the first example involving <i>processing</i>,
in this case transformation, of an OCL expression. So far we've just
relied on the AST builder to resolve identifiers to declarations and in
general provide us with well-formed ASTs. As we output an <i>updated</i>
AST thanks to an algorithm of our invention, we have to make sure that <i>we</i>
in turn play by the rules and return a valid AST.</p>
<p><img src="images/tip.gif" width="62" height="13" alt="">
You may want to review the checks for well-formedness embodied in <tt>org.eclipse.ocl.internal.parser.ValidationVisitor</tt>.</p>
<p>Moreover, it would be nice if we documented the set of OCL
expressions that our algorithm has been designed to handle (it's all
right to write a visitor that covers only a subset of OCL, as long as
that visitor reports whether it can cope with the input or not).</p>
<p>The sketched reduction is not the only possible one, logical
operations can be simplified according to de Morgan rules, and so on. In
such visitors one wants to return unmodified AST nodes most of the time
. In the arithmetic reduction case, a modified AST is returned only from
the handler for <tt>OperationCallExp</tt> in case both the source
expression and the argument are any of <tt>RealLiteralExp</tt> or <tt>IntegerLiteralExp</tt>.
In the resulting OCL expression, the <tt>CallExp</tt> (if any) that was
referencing the old (unmodified) source expression should be changed to
point to the freshly instantiated AST node. The behavior we saw in <tt>AbstractVisitor</tt>
for subtypes of <tt>CallExp</tt> (visiting the source, visiting the
contained nodes, doing processing, return) hints at how to implement
<p>It would be cumbersome to duplicate over and over that strategy
whenever a "reducer" visitor is written. Instead, we'll code <a
to provide such behavior by default. A new visitor need only override
those methods where it may detect an opportunity for applying a
reduction, invoking the non-overridden version in case the preconditions
for the reduction are not fulfilled. For example, method <tt>visitOperationCallExp()</tt>
in <a
starts as follows:</p>
protected Visitable handleOperationCallExp(
OperationCallExp&lt;C, O&gt; callExp, Visitable sourceResult,
List&lt;Visitable&gt; argumentResults) {
int opcode = callExp.getOperationCode();
if (!isArithmeticOp(callExp)) {
return super.handleOperationCallExp(callExp, sourceResult, argumentResults);
OCLExpression&lt;C&gt; newSource = (OCLExpression&lt;C&gt;) sourceResult;
OCLExpression&lt;C&gt; newArg = (OCLExpression&lt;C&gt;) argumentResults.get(0);
if (!(newSource instanceof NumericLiteralExp)
|| !(newArg instanceof NumericLiteralExp)) {
return super.handleOperationCallExp(callExp, sourceResult, argumentResults);
* actual reduction comes here
<p><img src="images/tip.gif" width="62" height="13" alt=""> A
visitor is not limited to letting other components know of its
processing only through return values, it may also update instance
state. This is frequently the case with <i>chains of visitors</i>: a
visitor receives as argument in its constructor the previous one.
However, for reduction-style visitors no instance state has been
<p><img src="images/tryit.gif" width="61" height="13" alt="">
You can plug <tt>OCLArithSimplifier</tt> into <tt>OCLASTView#displayOCL()</tt>
to display as XML the reduced AST. Just let <tt>oclExp</tt> in <tt>OCLASTView#displayOCL()</tt>
accept an instance of this visitor, right before <img
src="images/tag_4.gif" height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt="">,
as follows:</p>
XMLforOCL xfo = null;
OCLArithSimplifier simplifier = null;
if (context instanceof org.eclipse.uml2.uml.NamedElement) {
xfo = XMLforOCL.getUML2Version();
simplifier = OCLArithSimplifier.getUML2Version();
} else {
xfo = XMLforOCL.getEcoreVersion();
simplifier = OCLArithSimplifier.getEcoreVersion();
try {
oclExp = (OCLExpression) oclExp.accept(simplifier);
<img src="images/tag_4.gif" height="13" width="24" align="CENTER" alt=""> xmlAST = (Element) oclExp.accept(xfo); //
} catch (Exception e) {
xmlAST = reportException(e);
<p>In spite of having been around for some years now, the best times
for OCL are yet to come by leveraging <i>model compilers</i> to map
declarative specifications into the chosen target software architecture.
Some projects and prototypes in this field are mentioned for further
<li>The definition of domain-specific languages goes beyond a
grammar specification and includes so-called well-formedness rules to
validate ASTs of sentences in that language. OCL has proven successful
as a means to specify those rules. Having language metamodels with OCL
enables building better tooling for such domain-specific languages.
Examples of <i>machine-checked</i> metamodels include <a
metamodel for BPEL 1.1</a> by Dave Akehurst and <a
metamodel for EJB3QL</a> (also called JPQL) by this author.</li>
<li>The phrase “GUI generation” is commonly equated to mean CRUD
(Create-Retrieve-Update-Delete). The problem with generators of CRUD
GUIs is that the only model-level information they have at their
disposal is the class model without OCL. OCL-aware generation of GUIs
instead results in warnings at runtime after performing updates that
break invariants, and in graying-out actions whose preconditions are
not fulfilled. Even without modeling behavior (in this case, user
tasks) in the input models, taking OCL into account in code generation
contributes to both the productivity and the quality of the software
development process.</li>
<li>More ideas on simplification of OCL (sometimes for improved
readability, need not always be for performance!) can be found in <a
paper</a> and in <a
other paper</a>. An OCL tool aiming at supporting the refactoring of OCL
expressions is <a href="">RoclET</a>.</li>
<li>So far <i>rule engines</i> have been reluctant to adopt OCL as
notation for specifying the <i>activation condition</i> that triggers
the <i>action part</i> of a reactive rule. We see no major technical
difficulty in replacing this proprietary portion of rule languages with
standard OCL.</li>
<li>Detecting broken invariants and detecting when an activation
condition should trigger are particular cases of the <i>incremental
update of materialized views</i>, a topic of interest in all data models.
The most efficient algorithms to detect these situations have been
designed for relational DBMSs. Work in this area for OCL includes the
PhD thesis by <a
Cabot</a>, and <a
master thesis</a> on using AspectJ to instrument OCL contracts at runtime
(by <a href="">James
<p>The examples above are just a glimpse of on-going work involving
processing of Abstract Syntax Trees of OCL (in particular) and of
software models in general. The availability of OCL infrastructure as
provided by MDT OCL, together with contributions from the community, is
a step forward towards the widespread availability of reliable,
standards-based model-compiler technology. The building blocks for this
promising area are also at your disposal.</p>
<h2>Appendix A: Class model of Royal &amp; Loyal</h2>
<p>The class model of the <a href="./files/RandL.ecore">Royal &amp;
Loyal</a> case study is shown for reference purposes below:</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<td><img src="images/RandL/RandL.png"
alt="Royal and Loyal class model "></td>
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 18</b> Royal &amp; Loyal class
<h2>Appendix B: Comparison with XMI Tree Visualization</h2>
<p>OCL ASTs can be serialized to <tt>.xmi</tt> format from the OCL
Interpreter console and then visualized with the EMF-provided XMI
editor. In detail:</p>
<li>type an OCL expression in the OCL Interpreter console</li>
<li>save it (“Save last evaluated expression to an XMI file” on
the toolbar view)</li>
<li>bring that file to the workspace</li>
<li>open it with the Sample Reflective Ecore Model Editor</li>
<p>For the invariant shown in Figure 1, the result of the above
looks as follows (Figure 19):</p>
<table border="0" cellpadding="8">
<caption align="bottom"><b>Figure 19</b> Visualization of an
<tt>.xmi</tt> prepared with OCL Interpreter</caption>
<p>A comparison with Figure 1 shows that:</p>
<li>information about typing for the expression elements can be
found only in the Properties view, thus forcing to navigate between two
screen locations</li>
<li>the role played by each sub-expression (be it an argument, a
source expression, a new variable that will be visible in sub-scopes)
is not clear from the XMI editor. Instead, OCLASTView shows nodes
labelled with this OCL-specific information</li>
<li>OCLASTView can be easily extended to depict additional
information (e.g. which variables constitute the current scope at
different AST nodes). To reconstruct this information with an XMI
viewer, a cumbersome parsing of XML elements would be necessary
(cumbersome because the symbol tables prepared by the OCL parser are
not available anymore, and thus have to be in effect reconstructed)</li>
<p>Specially the last item sums up the differences between both data
<li>MDT OCL: <a
SDK Download</a> (includes on-line Developer Guide and Interactive OCL
Console example)</li>
<li>OCL 2.0: <a
: an EMF-based implementation of the UML<sup>TM</sup> 2.x metamodel for
the Eclipse platform.</li>
Tools</a> : a set of GMF-based editors for viewing and editing UML models.
<li>Christian W. Damus shows in his article <a
Model Integrity in EMF with MDT OCL</a> how to have Java method bodies
generated from OCL constraints (invariants, derived properties and
derived operations) specified in an Ecore-based model.</li>
<li>Ed Merks and Marcelo Paternostro explain in the EclipseCon
2007 talk <a
Generics with Ecore</a> the changes in Ecore that allow it to model a
generic type system.</li>
<p>The visitor for simplifying arithmetic expressions presented here
is based on work by <a href=" ">Veronica
Tedjasukmana</a> (for another OCL tool) on a family of visitors that cover a
larger set of simplification rules, for both arithmetic and boolean
<h2>Source Code</h2>
<p>For running this plug-in, just copy the provided <tt>.jar</tt> of
the <a href="./install/plugins/OCLASTView_1.0.0.jar">OCLASTView plug-in</a> into your <tt>&lt;ECLIPSE_INSTALL&gt;/plugins</tt>
folder, and restart Eclipse (with <tt>eclipse.exe -clean</tt> to be <i>really
sure</i> that the just added plug-in will be picked-up in the product
<p>MDT OCL 1.1 is required. Depending on whether you'll want to edit
Ecore or UML models you'll also need EMF 2.3 or UML2 2.x.</p>
<p>Source code is provided in the plug-in itself. After the plug-in
has been installed, the source code can be imported into the workspace
as an Eclipse project with File &gt; Import &gt; Plug-ins and Fragments
&gt; Projects with source folders &gt; OCLASTView.</p>
<p>If you want to take a look at the source code before actually
installing the plug-in, unpack the plug-in jar and take a look inside
the <tt>src</tt> folder.</p>
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