Altova Umodel

UModel® 2006 is the starting point for successful software development. Visually design application models and generate Java or C# code, or reverse engineer existing programs into UML® 2.1 diagrams then amend and fine tune your designs and complete the round trip by regenerating code. UModel® 2006 takes the mystery out of modeling, making visual software design practical for programmers and project managers. It is the simple, cost-effective way to draw on UML.

The Unified Modeling LanguageTM (UML) has become recognized as the 21st-century standard for exposing and analyzing development project requirements and for designing more efficient software solutions. Despite its clear benefits, UML has not been universally adopted because many programming teams were wary of switching to an unfamiliar new technology that may have been perceived as elitist due to the relative high cost and complexity of earlier UML tools. Until recently UML has been positioned as a solution reserved for software architects, but project managers and developers coming from code-writing backgrounds now have a UML tool that is easy to learn and use and is cost effective enough to implement throughout their organizations.

Altova UModel® 2006 is an affordable UML modeling application with a rich visual interface and superior usability features to help level the UML learning curve, yet it also includes many high-end functions to empower users with the most practical aspects of the UML specification. UModel® 2006 features context sensitive entry helpers, syntax coloring, cascading styles, customizable design elements, multiple layout views, and unlimited undo/redo, coupled with sophisticated modeling functionality such as code generation from models, reverse engineering of existing source code, and round-tripping modified code to update existing models. These capabilities allow developers, including those new to software modeling, to quickly leverage UML to enhance productivity and maximize their results.

Start with the Most Straightforward Diagrams
The UML 2.1, the latest version of the UML specification maintained by the Object Management GroupTM (OMGTM), spans hundreds of pages, defining 13 major diagram types and over 1,000 graphical and textual language elements, plus extension mechanisms. UModel® 2006 supports UML 2.1 and simplifies the problem of learning the complex syntax of software modeling by concentrating on the diagrams that are most useful early on in the development process and that yield immediate benefits to programmers, managers, and other project stakeholders:

  • Use case diagrams
  • Class diagrams
  • Object diagrams
  • Sequence diagrams
  • Packages
  • Component diagrams
  • Deployment diagrams

For instance, the use case diagrams illustrate how an actor – the UML designation of any person or thing – interacts with the system. Use case diagrams can be created in brainstorming sessions that include programmers, managers, and end-users of the proposed system to define and communicate system requirements. Drawing use case diagrams in UModel® 2006 during your analysis phase helps you record pictorial documentation of requirements that is understandable by programmers and non-programmers alike.

Shared packages created in UModel® 2006 can also increase your project team’s efficiency. Shared packages are subprojects you can employ to simplify reuse of successful design strategies or to integrate large models created in parts by different members of your programming team.

Generate Code from Models
As you proceed beyond use case analysis, you will start to design functional aspects of the system with class diagrams, object diagrams, component diagrams, and deployment diagrams. UModel® 2006 can generate your choice of Java or C# code from these diagram types, immediately accelerating your project.

Some developers use generated code from a quick sketch UML diagram to transition from the analysis and design phase to finished implementation in handwritten code. Others further refine, expand, and add detail to their UML models, then employ a greater amount of generated code in their projects.

Whatever method you choose, you’ll appreciate that the Java or C# source code generated by UModel® 2006 is compatible with Eclipse, Borland® JBuilder®, Microsoft® Visual C# .NET®, or Borland® C#Builder® and other popular development environments. UModel® 2006 even includes a model syntax checker to detect drawing errors or inconsistencies before they are replicated downstream in code. The application source code created by UModel® 2006 is defined in customizable templates you can modify to optimize for your compiler or target platform.

Create Models from Code
Altova UModel® 2006 includes a powerful reverse engineering capability for use in analyzing and extending your existing software applications. You can import Java or C# code and automatically generate UML models to render a graphical view of your program, its data structures, and their relationships. You can also use this technique to import existing class libraries and create diagrams then apply the libraries in new, modeled projects. Or, you can reverse-engineer an entire application to quickly understand it before extending its functionality.

If you currently use Altova XMLSpy® 2006 or Altova SchemaAgentTM 2006 to build XML-centric applications or if you use Altova MapForce® 2006 to address data translation demands, Altova UModel® 2006 is a natural extension of your development tools arsenal. As you’d expect, UModel® 2006 imports the Java or C# code generated by XMLSpy® 2006 or MapForce® 2006 and creates UML diagrams so you can model your XML Schema or data transformations as part of larger development efforts.

Get to There and Back Again
As your project evolves, you may choose to make revisions and enhancements either by modifying your UML models or by editing and extending your generated code. UModel® 2006 allows you to synchronize your changes either way. You can round-trip reworked Java or C# to update your UML diagrams, or you can re-generate code from the latest version of your model.

At any time you can export any diagram as a PNG image file to include in your project documentation. You can even run UModel® 2006 from the command line to perform repetitive tasks such as including the most recent version of a shared subproject.

You can even export UModel 2006 projects as industry-standard XMI 2.1 files and you can import XMI 2.1 files created by other applications, allowing you to exchange models with other UML tools.

With its optimal combination of features and its flexibility to work with other tools you already use, Altova UModel® 2006 will leverage your code-writing experience to get you up to speed with UML and quickly convey the benefits of modeling to your development projects.

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