Building Domain-specific Languages with Xtext and Xtend

Specifying the requirements of a software system and converting such a specification into executable source code is difficult and error-prone. Requirements specifications written in prose are often ambiguous and hard to understand for developers. Therefore, the process of turning this documents into software is slow and prone to error. Domain-specific languages (DSL) challenge this problem by defining a semantically rich notation to describe domain concepts clear and concise. Read more >

Goodbye assumptions: How to identify the right requirements with user requirements engineering

We need requirements for all our projects, and we build our systems based on them. Unfortunately, requirement lists can become incredibly long, and sometimes you just ask yourself “Who thought that would be a good idea?” Read more >

How Visualizing Traceability Data Removes the Worries of Project Management – Part 1

A manager of a single project, working closely with a small team on a daily basis, can fairly easily know the status of the project. However, a manager of several projects, maybe a department manager, manager of a large branch of a company, or even the manager of a company, will find it harder to have a personal feel for the status of the project he/she is responsible for, and will rely on information provided by other people and other sources. Read more >

Traceability – A generic way to link requirements and test cases

Do you want to establish (requirements) traceability to your custom scripts, text files and tools, e.g. link requirements residing in DOORS or Polarion to test cases defined in tools such as VectorCAST or maybe to a custom scripting language? In this post I want to illustrate how to achieve not only the linking in such a case, but also how easy it is to navigate such links and to create a coverage report based on those links. Read more >

A little story about good and bad job advertisements

One of the best job advertisements in the world came from British polar explorer and adventurer Ernest Shackleton, when looking for a team for his next Antarctic expedition: Read more >

A Tool-Based Security Analysis – Part 2: Damage Classes And Potentials

In Part 1 of this blog series, we have seen how the attack potential of an attacking agent can be modeled. For our system, we also want to model the parts and aspects that we want to protect and the damage that can be done by an attacker.  So as a next step, we will model damage classes and damage potential. Read more >

Pro Tip: Visualizing Xtext Grammar with Eclipse GEF

The Xtext grammar is the central component when developing DSL workbenches based on the Xtext framework. In case of complex DSLs, analyzing the graphical representation of *.xtext files can be useful to understand the structure of the defined grammar rules. Read more >

Working in a male-dominated industry: The everyday life of a software developer at itemis

When a colleague asked me recently if I could write an article for our blog about my work as a woman in the ‘male domain’ of IT, it was a strange moment. Read more >

A Tool-Based Security Analysis – Part 1: Required Attack Potential

As Dirk Leopold pointed out in his post, security is one of the most strategically important concerns in the automotive industry in the future. We will be introducing the concepts of security analysis and how they are adressed in a tool, that we have been developing. Read more >

Weaving Testing into the Web of Traceability

In the development of safety-critical systems it is essential to prove that the developed product fullfills all requirements (including system requirements, safety requirements and security requirements) to ensure the correct functionality and to prove that engineering is up to the state-of-the-art for legal reasons. Read more >


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