UML or Unified Modeling Language is a modeling standard in the field of object oriented software systems. Ithas been standardized by OMG(Object Management Group) after being developed by Rational Corp(BoochGroup). UML is a modeling language which puts together several diagrammatic views which can be used forany stage of the software development life cycle. UML was designed basically to provide a common platform
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for all the stakeholders in a project starting from the end users, analysts, designer, developers etc who are vitalto the success of the project. So, in a way it cut down the miscommunication of the requirements and thedisplay of the design in one common language which is understandable by everyone concerned.But UMLprovides you with the syntax of the diagrams and views but does not actually give you the context inwhich it has to be used. Its up to the designer or analyst to find the best fit for the particular UML Diagram. Thebest thing about UML is that its code independent. As long as its object oriented programming, UML diagramscan fit into it.UML provides us with the different diagram types which can be used in the design of an object orientedsoftware systems. They are broadlyclassifiedinto StructuralModelingdiagrams(whichdepictthe staticstructure of the system) and Behavioral Modeling diagrams(which depict the behaviorand transactionalmovements of the system). Some of the most commonly used UML diagrams are:a)Use Case Diagrams – is a high level diagram depicting the system boundary and the interaction betweenthe actors(users/external interfaces) and the systemb)Interaction Diagrams– Shows how the different objects of the system interact with each other c)Activity Diagrams– shows the business process flow and makes use of the use cases similar to data flowdiagramsd)Class Diagrams –depicts the properties and behaviors of the classes to be used in the system. Objects areinstances of Classes and an Object diagram depicts the objects in a similar manner to the class diagram.e)Sequence Diagrams– are used to display the orderly sequence of message transfer between entities of thesystemf) Component Diagrams– shows the component types and their dependencies in the architecture of thesystem as a wholeg)Deployment Diagrams – shows the physical architecture and the deployment components.FigA–UMLDiagramsOut of these UML diagrams which are as shown in Fig A, Business Analysts worldwide would mostly use theUse Case Diagram, Activity Diagram and sometimes, Sequence and Class Diagrams. Apart from these, themajority of the rest of the UML diagrams are designed by the solution architect or designers. It is not essential
that for any project all of the UML diagrams will have to be made. The UML diagrams are vital for a businessanalyst as they help him in getting the requirements validated and assessed. UML diagrams also add clarity tothe functional specification documentation and hence are widely used by the Business Analysts to corroboratetheir requirement elicitation.
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