Computer-aided Software Engineering (CASE) Tools | SAD

Computer-aided Software Engineering (CASE) Tools

Computer-aided systems engineering (CASE) tools are the software programs that help the development team do their jobs more efficiently and more effectively. These tools support the drawing and analysis of system models. Some CASE tools also provide prototyping and code generation capabilities. Some examples are: Oracle’s Designer 2000, Rational’s Rose, Platinum’s Erwin, Popkin’s System Architect 001, and Visible System’s Visible Analyst.

At the center of any CASE tool’s architecture is a developer’s database called a CASE repository. CASE repository is a system developer’s database where developers can store system models, detailed description and specification, and other products of system development. It is also called dictionary or encyclopedia.

Around the CASE repository is a collection of tools or facilities for creating system models and documentation. These facilities generally include:
  1. Diagramming tools –These tools are used to draw system models.
  2. Dictionary tools – These tools are used to record, delete, edit, and output detailed documentation and specification.
  3. Design tools – These tools are used to construct system components including system inputs and outputs. These are also called prototyping tools.
  4. Documentation tools – These tools are used to assemble, organize, and report on system models, descriptions and specifications, and prototypes.
  5. Quality management tools – These tools are used to analyze system models, descriptions and specifications, and prototypes for completeness, consistency, and conformance to accepted rules of methodologies.
  6. Design and code generator tools – These tools automatically generate database designs and application programs or significant portions of those programs.

Computer-aided Software Engineering (CASE) Tools | SAD

Today’s CASE tools provide two distinct ways to develop system models – forward engineering and reverse engineering. Forward engineering requires the system analyst to draw system models, either from scratch or from templates. The resulting models are subsequently transformed into program code. Reverse engineering, on the other hand, allows a CASE tool to read existing program code and transform that code into a representative system model that can be edited and refined by the systems analyst. CASE tools that allow for bi-directional, forward and reverse engineering are said to provide for “round-trip engineering”.

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