Incremental execution of model-to-text transformations using property access traces

Babajide Ogunyomi*, Louis M. Rose, Dimitrios S. Kolovos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Automatic generation of textual artefacts (including code, documentation, configuration files, build scripts, etc.) from models in a software development process through the application of model-to-text (M2T) transformation is a common MDE activity. Despite the importance of M2T transformation, contemporary M2T languages lack support for developing transformations that scale with the size of the input model. As MDE is applied to systems of increasing size and complexity, a lack of scalability in M2T transformation languages hinders industrial adoption. In this paper, we propose a form of runtime analysis that can be used to identify the impact of source model changes on generated textual artefacts. The structures produced by this runtime analysis, property access traces, can be used to perform efficient source-incremental transformation: our experiments show an average reduction of 60% in transformation execution time compared to non-incremental (batch) transformation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal on Software & Systems Modelling
Early online date28 Mar 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 28 Mar 2018

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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details


  • Incrementality
  • Model-driven engineering
  • Model-to-text transformation
  • Scalability

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