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Skip to main content Country/region [ select ] Home Solutions Services Products My IBM developerWorks Rational Technical library UML basics: The class diagram An introduction to structure diagrams in UML 2 Donald Bell ( bellds@us.ibm.com ), IT Specialist, IBM Search
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technology applications. He can be reached at bellds@us.ibm.com . Summary: from The Rational Edge: As the most important example of the new structure diagram type in UML 2, the class diagram can be used by analysts, business modelers, developers, and testers throughout the software development lifecycle. This article offers a comprehensive introduction. View more content in this series Tag this! Date: 15 Sep 2004 Level: Introductory Activity: 78085 views Comments: This is the next installment in a series of articles about the essential diagrams used within the Unified Modeling Language, or UML. In my previous article on sequence diagrams, I shifted focus away from the UML 1.4 spec to OMG's Adopted 2.0 Draft Specification of UML (a.k.a. UML 2). In this article, I will discuss Structure Diagrams, which is a new diagram category that has been introduced in UML 2. Because the purpose of this series is to educate people about the notation elements and their meanings, this article focuses mainly on the class diagram. The reason for this will soon become clear. Subsequent articles will cover other diagrams included in the structure category. I also want to remind readers that this series is about UML notation elements, and that these articles are not meant to provide guidance on the best approach for modeling, or how to determine what things should be modeled in the first place. Instead, the purpose of this article and of the series in general is to help with a basic understanding of notation elements -- their syntax and their meanings. With this knowledge you should be able to read diagrams and create your own diagrams using the proper notation elements. This article assumes you have a rudimentary understanding of object-oriented design. For those of you who need a little assistance with OO concepts, you might try the Sun brief tutorial about Object-Oriented Programming at http://java.sun.com/docs/books/tutorial/java/concepts/ . Reading the sections "What Is a Class?" and "What Is Inheritance?" should give you enough understanding to make this article useful. In addition, David Taylor's book, Object-Oriented Technologies: A Manager's Guide , offers an excellent, high- level explanation of object-oriented design without requiring an in-depth understanding of computer programming. The yin and yang of UML 2
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