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Need some Experiences on Topcased, OAW for MDA

Posted by sureshkrishna on November 30, 2007

I have been looking at the Topcased IDE for Model Driven Development. With so many tools used inside, its a lot overwhelming to know each tool and see how they should be used. Tools / Concepts like AADL, Acceleo, OAW in the TopCased makes me confuse with the Eclipse Modeling Framework Project. OAW has the topics like Model-to-Text, Model-to-Model and other Model Front end tools.

I would need some help from any one who can point me to a high level differences between the EMF Project and OAW/Topcased. I do remember seeing OAW on Eclipse site some time back, but i don’t remember the context.

More importantly, if any of individuals or companies are using Topcased suite for the MDA, please do let me know your experiences.  I am evaluating some of the MDA Development tools and i would like to get feedback from all you experts.


5 Responses to “Need some Experiences on Topcased, OAW for MDA”

  1. David Sciamma said

    We are deeply involved in Topcased developments. So you can contact us or use the Topcased mailing-list for users ( to post all your questions about MDA using Topcased.

  2. Last time I checked, OAW was MDDi subproject. Not sure what’s happening on that front these days. OAW is more of a infrastructure and Topcased is mere toolkit using it. I’m not in sync with on-going Topcased nowadays but I had a chance in past and I hacked Topcased inside out and know that Topcased has its own generators for diagram interchange, tabbed properties and has many small meta-models and many of the editor generation stuff is slightly different, nicely developed, from those in EMF and GMF.

    Hope that helps. As David said, Topcased mailing list is the best place to seek answers.

  3. Thanks Nirav and David. Your comments are helpful. I have also subscribed to Topcased mailing list.
    On the similar topic, do you have your own experiences on MDA with any of EMF / OAW frameworks.
    If yes, please do share your experiences. I am not looking at 100% MDA, but i want to be sensible in the MDA adoption.
    Right now i know few of the tools/framewroks which supports MDA (Eclipse + EMF, Topcased + OAW)…
    I am trying to see what is the most frequently used tool or recommended tools/frameworks.

  4. Last time I checked, OAW was MDDi subproject.
    No, oAW was never a subproject of MDDi. It is located within the GMT project. Some mature parts of the core are moving right now to EMFT (the MWE project) and M2T (Xpand template language). oAW will be a distribution of those core features and “the rest” (like UML2 adapter, recipe, etc.). But this is future.

    At first we have to distinguish between tools for building models, frameworks enabling building of (meta-)models and model transformations. oAW does not provide any modeling tools or frameworks. It enables reading any kind of model and transforming them into other models (model-to-model) or into code (model-to-text). The focus is on providing a highly modular, scalable and easy-to-use framework for building model transformators.

    oAW is used broadly in practice. For building models often UML2 tools are used (Topcased, MagicDraw, whatever). There is a growing acceptance for tailored metamodels build with EMF and corresponding DSL editors build with GMF, Topcased and so on. Another approach is building textual concrete syntaxes with oAW Xtext or TCS. For any of those models oAW is ready.

    oAW does not have the focus on providing ready-to-use so-called “cartridges”. This is left to other projects built with oAW. Some open source cartridges are available or under development, such as Hibernate, Spring, Grails, EJB2/3, Sculptor, wCMF, PHP/Symfony. Having those projects in the ecospace of oAW makes the oAW project itself more agile than other code generators.

    In the meanwhile it is hard to summarize what oAW is and what it can do for you. It and its community is growing rapidly. We at itemis use and introduce MDSD with oAW in most of our projects. Our customers are mostly large companies from all industrial sectors.

    We have an active forum at where I ask you to discuss further.

    Best wishes,
    ~Karsten Thoms
    openArchitectureWare Core Developer

  5. Oh well I’m sorry, By MDDi I meant Eclipse Modeling top project. MDDi is actually a framework for integrating modeling tools in Eclipse and I confuse it with Top level Modeling project.

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