Matt Nicholson recently interviewed Steve Cook on software factories for DNJ Online [Inside Software Factories]. They discussed the history of software factories, partial classes, domain-specific languages, and UML 2.0. It’s an excellent read.
Software factories integrate modelling and code generation with patterns, frameworks and guidance to provide developers with a development environment tailored to the job in hand. Matt Nicholson talks to Steve Cook, an Architect for Visual Studio Team System, about software factories and domain specific languages (DSLs) and how they relate to Microsoft's forthcoming development environment.
“The automated guidance from Patterns and Practices could be thought of as the beginnings of a software factory, but there’s no modelling in there.”
“Code generation is only part of the story. What we’re talking about is integrated metadata and mappings between different levels of description – business level, architecture level, functional level, security, what’s deployed where, what’s maintained, what versioning you’ve got, where was that bug introduced, and so on. That’s core to our software factory vision.”
“It’s a pity there’s a big debate here because in practice, when I talk to customers who are actually using MDA (and that’s not the vendors of MDA), we are in complete agreement about what we’re trying to do.”
“There’s a lot we could say about UML, but I think the key points are that UML’s popularity isn’t its meta-model: UML’s popularity is the pictures, and an informal understanding of what they mean.”