Generating Interactive Questionnaires From Configuration Models
Configuration, be it at the level of models or at the level of code, is a recurrent issue in systems engineering. It arises for example in enterprise systems, where modules are adapted and composed to meet the needs of individual customers based on modifications to a reference model. It also manifests itself in the context of software product families, where variants of a system are built from a common code base. Configuration of such generic systems generally involves two phases: (i) collecting data by answering a set of questions; and (ii) performing certain actions on an existing model or code base to produce an individualized model or system. This paper focuses on the first of these phases. The paper proposes a formal foundation for representing configuration models as well as methods to ensure the consistency of these models and to generate questionnaires from them. The generated questionnaires are interactive, in the sense that questions are only posed if and when they can be answered, and the space of allowed answers to a question is determined by previous answers. The approach has been implemented and tested against a reference model from the logistics domain.
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