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Component Information Day
toward the next component model generation for distributed, real-time and embedded systems

Monday Afternoon, 1300 - 1730, March 18, 2013

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1300 - 1310 Welcome – Introduction to OMG & its Component Standards
Object Management Group
The day begins with presentations covering core Component concepts. Presentations in the second session show how standards-based Component software is used in mission-critical DRE applications. The day concludes with an extended session on the proposed next-generation Unified Component Model (UCM). This new initiative will build on established OMG Component-Based Software Engineering and modeling standards; attendees will get an early insight into the thinking driving the new proposals, and learn how they can influence the future direction of this important specification.
SESSION 1:  Foundation Concepts - Component, Container, Connector
1310 - 1335 Connectors : A Mechanism to Extend CCM with New Ports
Virginie Watine, THALES - (Down Load PDF)
This session will introduce the DDS4CCM specification adopted recently with a specific focus on the Generic Interaction Support (extended ports and connectors) that was incorporated into the standard. This GIS was designed not to be dependent on any DDS specificity, with the goal of being usable for any kind of CCM port (i.e. not only those allowing interaction though DDS). Due to its full genericity, it was then moved to the CCM specification and used to define other types of ports (AMI, events, and others) that will be detailed in other talks. As this mechanism presents a great potential, it is one strong pillar on which the renewed component model will be built.
1335 - 1400 Tailoring a Component Framework with User-Defined Connectors
Mark Hayman, Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems - (Down Load PDF)
In addition to defining normative connector types for integration of DDS middleware into a CCM component framework, the OMG DDS for Lightweight CCM (DDS4CCM) standard combined with recent CCM GIS improvements offers domain users the ability to define their own new or extended connector types. User-defined connectors can encapsulate any middleware or transport layer alternative to DDS, either extending DDS to enable enhanced functionality, or to replace it entirely with something else. By leveraging a generic, extensible GIS connector development framework, such as that provided by the DOC Group’s CIAO product, users can build their own custom connector types to target a variety of domain specific applications. Moreover, extensible connector capabilities incorporated into Component Based DDS (CBDDS) UML profiles available from commercial MDA tool vendors Atego and Zeligsoft, enable users to build their own connector model libraries, making the use of custom connector types even easier.

This presentation will discuss four connector types that have been developed for Northrop Grumman’s Teton Scalable Node Architecture (SNA) Platform, which is built upon a CBDDS application framework foundation. These custom connectors all extend the functionality of the normative DDS4CCM connectors. The first two connector types include a Publish Subscribe Attachment Transfer (PSAT) connector, for high-performance, zero/single copy shared memory or OpenFabrics Enterprise Distribution (OFED) based RDMA wideband data transport, as well a Signal Processing Data Model (SPDM) connector that extends PSAT to support the location independent transport of OMG VSIPL or VSIPL++ standard “views” for high-performance, component-based signal and image processing applications. The third connector type is a Discovery connector, which offers a DDS-only service registration and lookup, directory services alternative to the CORBA Naming Service for both D&C deployment framework “progressive” deployment as well as application-level DRE service discovery. The fourth connector type is an encapsulation of the still-in-development OMG Application Instrumentation (AI) standard for DDS-based binary data instrumentation, to supplement distributed, text-based logging.

1400 - 1425 Asynchronous Invocations through Connectors and the IDL to C++11 Language Mapping
Johnny Willemsen, Remedy IT - (Down Load PDF)
Connectors are a powerful concept as part of current and future component frameworks. This session will demonstrate of how connectors can be used to add asynchronous invocation support to a component framework. Secondly we will present an overview of the recently adopted IDL to C++11 Language Mapping. This new IDL2C++11 mapping greatly simplifies the life for a component developer compared to the IDL to C++ mapping. We will highlight several of the simplifications and how this can be used for a C++11 implementation of a component standard.
1425 - 1440 Afternoon Refreshments
SESSION 2:  Use Cases
1440 - 1505 MyCCM a Component Framework Tailored for RTE Systems
Olivier Hachet, THALES - (Down Load PDF)
Thales has invested for several years in the promotion and deployment of component based software engineering (CBSE) based on the lightweight CCM standard. This presentation will explain the progression for the adoption of CBSE from its contribution to the LwCCM standard up to the deployment of the MyCCM framework on several Thales domains today. In many programs, the targeted environments were constrained by strong footprint or real-time requirements that have implied several pragmatic adaptations to fit these constraints that were not reachable natively by the LwCCM standard. These adaptations and the associated return of experience will be an input for future LwCCM evolutions toward a more real-time and middleware agnostic component model.
1505 - 1530 F6COM: A Case Study in Extending Container Services through Connectors
William R. Otte, Vanderbilt University - (Down Load PDF)
Component-based programming models are well-suited for the design of large-scale, distributed applications because of the ease with which distributed functionality can be developed, deployed, and validated using the models' compositional properties. Existing component models supported by standardized technologies, such as the OMG's CORBA Component Model (CCM), however, suffer from a number of limitations in the context of applications that operate in highly dynamic, resource-constrained, and uncertain environments, such as space environments, and yet require multiple Quality of Service (QoS) assurances, such as timeliness, reliability, and security.

This presentation will discuss extensions and modifications made to the OMG CCM standard to develop a component model for applications operating in a spacecraft cluster. To that end, we attempted to solve a number of challenges presented by CCM:

1) CCM provides no intrinsic support for scheduling of operations on a component interface; this is especially important if strong guarantees for single-threading must be made for components. Operations and ports in a component interface may have differing levels of criticality and hence should be scheduled appropriately.

2) CCM cannot guarantee that only a single thread of control will be active in a component at any given time. Such behavior is necessitated by safety requirements but it is largely governed by the configuration of the middleware that CCM is using for intra-application communication. Moreover, when additional middleware are added through connectors, such guarantees become murky, at best. This forces component developers to create complicated and error prone synchronization logic to control scheduling of different operations in their components, leading to the possibility of deadlocks and race conditions.

3) CCM lacks support for scheduled periodic and aperiodic operations - such operations must currently be scheduled manually by the component business logic by directly using threads and timers. This is again pernicious and error prone.

In our work these challenges were addressed to a large extent by using the connector facility provided by the DDS4CCM specification and IDL3+. We will describe how these connectors have been leveraged to remove any dependency on CORBA for communication amongst components, provide centralized scheduling of operations on a component, and to provide strong single-threaded operation guarantee for components deployed in containers. Connectors, in this context, have provided a powerful and flexible means with which to extend the semantics and behavior of CCM beyond its initial design and serve as an important use case as we move towards a Unified Component Model.
This work was supported by the DARPA System F6 Program

1530 - 1555 Advantages of a Component Based DDS Application Framework
Mark Hayman, Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems - (Down Load PDF)
A Component Based DDS (CBDDS) application framework encompasses an integrated suite of seven OMG open standard technologies, including CCM, DDS, DDS4CCM, AMI4CCM, CORBA, IDL and D&C (DEPL). At Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems (NGES), our multi-year Teton Project open architecture initiative has adopted CBDDS as the foundation for building distributed, real-time, embedded (DRE) applications targeting large, complex systems. To date we have used our CBDDS-based Scalable Node Architecture (SNA) Platform on 14 different programs and almost twenty internal R&D efforts, and plan to leverage it on many more in the future. We look forward to continued advancement of the CBDDS technology suite, including MDA tooling enhancements, spec improvements to the dynamic capabilities of D&C, as well as the anticipated advantages of an OMG Unified Component Model (UCM) as a lighter-weight, higher performance alternative of the CCM component framework that we use today.

This presentation will offer a brief introduction to the NGES Teton Project, covering the five Component Based Architecture (CBA), Open Architecture (OA), Model Driven Architecture (MDA), Event Driven Architecture (EDA) and Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) architectural tenets that have driven the selection of CBDDS as our core application framework foundation. We will discuss our activities relative to CBDDS technology advancement in terms of open source and commercial development of both DRE middleware and MDA tooling for CBDDS, and how we’ve been using this technology over the past 3 years on real-world applications with excellent results. The advantages offered by a CBDDS application framework will be presented, as compared for instance to a less comprehensive CORBA or DDS-only messaging framework, covering the additional key architecture quality attributes addressed by CBDDS. These notably include greatly improved and enforceable modularity, improved portability, reduced complexity due to the higher CBDDS abstraction level for application development, MDA tooling options and productivity enhancements leveraging component-based design methodologies, development time reduction and faster time-to-market for DRE applications, reduced development costs, and component level software reuse.

SESSION 3:  Towards a Unified Component Model
1555 - 1620 A Middleware-agnostic Unified Component Model
Nawel Hamouche, Ph.D, PrismTech
Didier Becu, Gaetan Pruvost, Olivier Hachet, THALES
- (Down Load PDF)
Over the past few years, middleware technologies has proven their value to build an interoperable and networked world. This has been achieved mainly by providing a platform and network independence to the applications. Nowadays, middleware-independence comes as the next requirement for flexibility and reusability in distributed systems development. Middleware independence allows user and organizations to embrace new middleware technologies as the market innovates with minimal impact on their applications, thereby eliminating the threat of technology and vendor lock-in. The benefit is clearly to protect their technology investment and reduce time-to-market with new innovations. Applied to distributed component-based architectures the benefits are strongly increased.

The Lightweight CORBA Component Model is a distributed component-based model that is platform and programming language independent. It is specifically targeted at resource-constrained environments. Its open, generic and flexible architecture enables seamless integration of multiple middleware technologies whatever their patterns are – service-centric, data-centric... The DDS for Lightweight CCM specification is a good illustration of LwCCM‘s ability to host different middleware technologies. Such flexibility is achieved through the concept of Connector. Connectors decouple the component framework from the underlying communication middleware technology. Despite this interesting capability, the LwCCM remains strongly dependent on its historical middleware: CORBA. Even if CORBA is not necessarily used at the application level, the LwCCM internal architecture remains strongly CORBA-aware, as the deployment of such applications still require the deployment of a CORBA Object Request Broker.

This presentation aims to feed the discussions about the future evolution of the LwCCM towards the new Unified Component Model (UCM) standard. The presentation will, first, precisely highlight the LwCCM-to-CORBA dependency points in order to introduce a set of requirements for the UCM standard. Then, it will analyze the impact of these requirements on the LwCCM architecture from both the end-user and the implementer perspectives.

1620 - 1655 Evolution from LwCCM to UCM
Johnny Willemsen, Remedy IT - (Down Load PDF)
This session will present our 10 high level requirements for a new UCM standard. Based on these requirements we will present a concrete path for how LwCCM could evolve into a new Unified Component Model. This revised component model shall be CORBA independent and provide an evolutionary path for current LwCCM users.
1655 - 1725 Unified Component Model - the Next Steps
Open Discussion
Informed by OMG's extensive experience with Component standards for DRE applications, the organisation's Middleware and Related Services (MARS) Task Force is starting work on a next-generation DRE Component specification, provisionally called the Unified Component Model (UCM). Designed from the outset to be middleware-agnostic, this will bring the benefits of component-based development to the widest-possible range of DRE applications.

This session will outline the process for creating this new Component specification, based on a Request for Proposals (RFP) that will be issued in the near future. Leading industry figures will make contributions on the priorities for the new specification and its key features.

Attendees will get an early insight into the thinking driving the proposals, and learn how they can influence the direction of this important new specification.

1725 - 1730 Wrap Up & Get Involved
Object Management Group

NOTE: If you register for the Technical Meeting Week, you do not have to pay the additional fee(s) to attend any or all of the special events.  If you register only for special events, the special fees apply.

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