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Agent-based tactics for goal-oriented requirements elaboration

Letier, E; van Lamsweerde, A; (2002) Agent-based tactics for goal-oriented requirements elaboration. In: ICSE 2002: PROCEEDINGS OF THE 24TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON SOFTWARE ENGINEERING. (pp. 83 - 93). ASSOC COMPUTING MACHINERY

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Goal orientation is an increasingly recognized paradigm for eliciting, structuring, analyzing and documenting system requirements. Goals are statements of intent ranging from high-level, strategic concerns to low-level, technical requirements on the software-to-be and assumptions on its environment. Achieving goals require the cooperation of agents such as software components, input/output devices and human agents. The assignment of responsibilities for goals to agents is a critical decision in the requirements engineering process as alternative agent assignments define alternative system proposals.The paper describes a systematic technique to support the process of refining goals, identifying agents, and exploring alternative responsibility assignments. The underlying principles are to refine goals until they are assignable to single agents, and to assign a goal to an agent only if the agent can realize the goal.There are various reasons why a goal may not be realizable by an agent, e.g., the goal may refer to variables that are not monitorable or controllable by the agent. The notion of goal realizability is first defined on formal grounds; it provides a basis for identifying a complete taxonomy of realizability problems. From this taxonomy we systematically derive a catalog of tactics for refining goals and identifying agents so as to resolve realizability problems. Each tactics corresponds to the application of a formal refinement pattern that relieves the specifier from verifying the correctness of refinements in temporal logic.Our techniques have been used in two case studies of significant size; excerpts are shown to illustrate the main ideas.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Agent-based tactics for goal-oriented requirements elaboration
Event: 24th International Conference on Software Engineering
Location: ORLANDO, FL
Dates: 2002-05-19 - 2002-05-25
ISBN: 1-58113-472-X
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/13391
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