›› 2014, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (4): 724-736.doi: 10.1007/s11390-014-1462-5

• Software Systems • Previous Articles    

Interactive Inconsistency Fixing in Feature Modeling

Bo Wang1,2 (王波), Ying-Fei Xiong1,2 (熊英飞), Member, CCF, ACM, IEEE, Zhen-Jiang Hu1,2,3,* (胡振江), Member, ACM, IEEE, Hai-Yan Zhao1,2 (赵海燕), Member, CCF, ACM, IEEE, Wei Zhang1,2 (张伟), and Hong Mei1,2,4 (梅宏), Fellow, CCF, Member, ACM, IEEE   

  1. 1. Key Laboratory of High Confidence Software Technologies, Ministry of Education, Beijing 100871, China;
    2. Institute of Software, School of Electronics Engineering and Computer Science, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China;
    3. National Institute of Informatics, Tokyo 101-8430, Japan;
    4. Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
  • Online:2014-07-05 Published:2014-07-05
  • About author:Bo Wang received his B.S. degree in computer science from University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, in 2007, and his Ph.D. degree in computer science from Peking University, Beijing, in 2014. His research interests are requirements engineering, domain engineering, and variability model configuration.
  • Supported by:

    This work is supported by the National High Technology Research and Development 863 Program of China under Grant No. 2013AA01A605, the National Basic Research 973 Program of China under Grant No. 2011CB302604, the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant Nos. 61121063, U1201252, 61272163, 61202071, and 60528006, and the Japan MEXT Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (A) under Grant No. 25240009.

Feature models have been widely adopted to reuse the requirements of a set of similar products in a domain. In feature models' construction, one basic task is to ensure the consistency of feature models, which often involves detecting and fixing of inconsistencies in feature models. While many approaches have been proposed, most of them focus on detecting inconsistencies rather than fixing inconsistencies. In this paper, we propose a novel dynamic-priority based approach to interactively fixing inconsistencies in feature models, and report an implementation of a system that not only automatically recommends a solution to fixing inconsistencies but also supports domain analysts to gradually reach the desirable solution by dynamically adjusting priorities of constraints. The key technical contribution is, as far as we are aware, the first application of the constraint hierarchy theory to feature modeling, where the degree of domain analysts' confidence on constraints is expressed by using priority and inconsistencies are resolved by deleting one or more lower-priority constraints. Two case studies demonstrate the usability and scalability (efficiency) of our new approach.

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