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A Comprehensive Study of Declarative Behavioural Modelling Languages
  • Nancy Day ,
  • Amin Bandali
Nancy Day
University of Waterloo

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Amin Bandali
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Abstract

Declarative behavioural modelling is a powerful modelling paradigm that enables users to model system functionality abstractly and formally using constraints. There are several different formal declarative languages and they have greatly varying constructs for representing a transition system, and they sometimes differ in rather subtle ways. We qualitatively compare seven formal declarative modelling languages B, Event-B, Alloy, Dash, TLA+, PlusCal, and Asmetal, with respect to three main categories: structuring transition systems (control modelling), data descriptions in transition systems (data modelling), and modularity aspects of modelling. We developed this comparison by completing a set of case studies across the data- vs. control-oriented spectrum of models in all of the above languages. We present recommendations based on our observations about the differentiating characteristics of each of these languages to help modellers answer the important question of which declarative modelling language may be most suitable for modelling their system.