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A survey on web modeling approaches for ubiquitous web applications

Wieland Schwinger ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Werner Retschitzegger ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Andrea Schauerhuber ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Gerti Kappel ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Manuel Wimmer ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Birgit Pröll ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Cristina Cachero Castro ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Sven Casteleyn ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Olga De Troyer ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Piero Fraternali ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Irene Garrigos ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Franca Garzotto ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Athula Ginige ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Geert‐Jan Houben ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Nora Koch ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Nathalie Moreno ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Oscar Pastor ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Paolo Paolini ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Vicente Pelechano Ferragud ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Gustavo Rossi ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Daniel Schwabe ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Massimo Tisi ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Antonio Vallecillo ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Kees van der Sluijs ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))
Gefei Zhang ((Affiliations are shown at the end of the paper))

International Journal of Web Information Systems

ISSN: 1744-0084

Article publication date: 29 August 2008

Abstract

Purpose

Ubiquitous web applications (UWA) are a new type of web applications which are accessed in various contexts, i.e. through different devices, by users with various interests, at anytime from anyplace around the globe. For such full‐fledged, complex software systems, a methodologically sound engineering approach in terms of model‐driven engineering (MDE) is crucial. Several modeling approaches have already been proposed that capture the ubiquitous nature of web applications, each of them having different origins, pursuing different goals and providing a pantheon of concepts. This paper aims to give an in‐depth comparison of seven modeling approaches supporting the development of UWAs.

Design/methodology/approach

This methodology is conducted by applying a detailed set of evaluation criteria and by demonstrating its applicability on basis of an exemplary tourism web application. In particular, five commonly found ubiquitous scenarios are investigated, thus providing initial insight into the modeling concepts of each approach as well as to facilitate their comparability.

Findings

The results gained indicate that many modeling approaches lack a proper MDE foundation in terms of meta‐models and tool support. The proposed modeling mechanisms for ubiquity are often limited, since they neither cover all relevant context factors in an explicit, self‐contained, and extensible way, nor allow for a wide spectrum of extensible adaptation operations. The provided modeling concepts frequently do not allow dealing with all different parts of a web application in terms of its content, hypertext, and presentation levels as well as their structural and behavioral features. Finally, current modeling approaches do not reflect the crosscutting nature of ubiquity but rather intermingle context and adaptation issues with the core parts of a web application, thus hampering maintainability and extensibility.

Originality/value

Different from other surveys in the area of modeling web applications, this paper specifically considers modeling concepts for their ubiquitous nature, together with an investigation of available support for MDD in a comprehensive way, using a well‐defined as well as fine‐grained catalogue of more than 30 evaluation criteria.

Keywords

Citation

Schwinger, W., Retschitzegger, W., Schauerhuber, A., Kappel, G., Wimmer, M., Pröll, B., Cachero Castro, C., Casteleyn, S., De Troyer, O., Fraternali, P., Garrigos, I., Garzotto, F., Ginige, A., Houben, G., Koch, N., Moreno, N., Pastor, O., Paolini, P., Pelechano Ferragud, V., Rossi, G., Schwabe, D., Tisi, M., Vallecillo, A., van der Sluijs, K. and Zhang, G. (2008), "A survey on web modeling approaches for ubiquitous web applications", International Journal of Web Information Systems, Vol. 4 No. 3, pp. 234-305. https://doi.org/10.1108/17440080810901089

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited