Survey on Textual Notations for the Unified Modeling Language

Stephan Seifermann, Henning Groenda


The Unified Modeling Language (UML) has become the lingua franca of software description languages. Textual notations of UML are also accessible for visually impaired people and allow a more developer-oriented and compact presentation. There are many textual notations that largely differ in their syntax, coverage of the UML, user editing experience, and applicability in teams due to the lack of a standardized textual notation. The available surveys do not cover the academic state of the art, the editing experience and applicability in teams. This implies heavy effort for evaluating and selecting notations. This survey identifies textual notations for UML that can be used instead of or in combination with graphical notations, e.g. by collaborating teams or in different contexts. We identified and rated the current state of 16 known notations plus 15 notations that were not covered in previous surveys. 20 categories cover the applicability in engineering teams. No single editable textual notation has full UML coverage. The mean coverage is 2.7 diagram types and editing support varies between none and 7 out of 9 categories. The survey facilitates the otherwise unclear notation selection and can reduce selection effort.


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Paper Citation

in Harvard Style

Seifermann S. and Groenda H. (2016). Survey on Textual Notations for the Unified Modeling Language . In Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Model-Driven Engineering and Software Development - Volume 1: MODELSWARD, ISBN 978-989-758-168-7, pages 28-39. DOI: 10.5220/0005644900280039

in Bibtex Style

author={Stephan Seifermann and Henning Groenda},
title={Survey on Textual Notations for the Unified Modeling Language},
booktitle={Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Model-Driven Engineering and Software Development - Volume 1: MODELSWARD,},

in EndNote Style

JO - Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Model-Driven Engineering and Software Development - Volume 1: MODELSWARD,
TI - Survey on Textual Notations for the Unified Modeling Language
SN - 978-989-758-168-7
AU - Seifermann S.
AU - Groenda H.
PY - 2016
SP - 28
EP - 39
DO - 10.5220/0005644900280039