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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Explain the concepts of Domain Analysis Process?

Domain analysis is one of the three phases of the domain engineering and is the first one. Domain engineering makes re- use of all the domain knowledge in the development of new software systems and applications. It forms a key concept of the software re- use. 

Application domain provides a key idea in the systematic software re- use of the software system or application. In this article we have discussed the process of domain analysis. The process of domain analysis involves sub processes like:
  1. Identification of domains
  2. Bounding of the identified domains
  3. Discovering commonalities and variabilities among all the systems in a particular domain.
The knowledge obtained in the above mentioned activities is captured in the models which are then later used in the third phase of domain engineering i.e., domain implementation for the creation of the artifacts such as:
  1. Domain specific language
  2. Re- usable components
  3. Application generators

Concepts of Domain Analysis

All the above mentioned artifacts can be used to develop new software systems or applications within that particular domain. 
- Domain analysis is one of the three primary phases of the domain engineering and focuses up on multiple systems within a domain. 
- In the phase of domain analyzation, the system domain is defined with the help of feature models. 
- Earlier these feature models were considered to be a part of the so called method: feature oriented domain analysis.
- One of the main aims of the domain analysis is to identify the common points as well as varying points in a particular domain. 
- The domain analysis has greatly helped in improving the development of the system architectures as well as the configurable requirements. 
- Apart from this, the domain analysis also helps with the development of static configurations.
- Most of the people confuse the domain analysis with requirements engineering, this is a mistake not to be made! 
- Domain analysis proves to be an effective technology for the development of the configurable requirements as compared to the traditional approaches since they are ineffective in domains. 
- The domain engineering tends to be effective only if the re-use of the already existing software artifacts is considered in the early stages of the development of the software system or application. 
- In the domain analysis, the features that can be re- used in the new software systems or applications are selected earlier and later are worked throughout the development life cycle. 
The entire process of the domain analysis is driven by the past experience produced from the artifacts on a primary basis. 
- There are many potential sources of the domain analysis few of which have been mentioned below:
  1. Artifacts of the existing systems.
  2. Requirement documents
  3. Design documents
  4. Standards
  5. User manuals
  6. Customers and so on.
- It is not necessary that the domain analysis should consist of the collected and formalized information rather it is the presence of a creative component that matters more.
- This thing distinguishes the domain analysis from the requirements engineering. 
- During the domain analysis what actually happens is that the developers try to extend their knowledge of the domain beyond what is already known. 
- This is done basically to categorize the similarities and differences of the domains so that the re-configurability is enhanced. 
- The domain analysis is carried out with the help of a domain model that represents the commonalities and variabilities of all the systems lying in that domain. 
- Basically, the creation of the components and architectures of the system is assisted by the domain model. 

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