Ovum has warned companies against using the Unified Modelling Language (UML) in large corporate applications. In a report on the language, Ovum warns that "UML is not yet sufficiently mature for large-scale, mission critical projects". UML is a standard notation for software architecture, unifying business process modelling, object-oriented analysis and design, and database and component design. "UML will help break software development out of a handicraft era and bring it into a modern engineering discipline," said Ivar Jacobson, vice president of business engineering at Rational Software, which initiated the UML project Mike Budd, author of the report, agreed that "UML looks certain to become a de facto standard given that Rational has assembled the support of most of the key vendors in the application development field, including Microsoft." How-ever, he also noted that "UML still disappoints in several key areas". He argued that no formal syntax is specified for expressions, conditions or invariants, meaning users cannot specify complete applications. He found UML syntax to be "more complex than is necessary to model the behaviour it covers". There is no specific support in UML for code generation, and it does not provide fully-developed support for real-time and safety-critical applications. There have been substantial changes to the UML spec between versions 1.0 and 1.1, which led Budd to conclude that it is still maturing and is not yet ready for the development of critical applications. Microsoft is to use UML v.1.1 as one of the information models for its MS Repository v.1.0, and it has licensed Rational's Rose product for use in its Visual Tools suite. UML was developed by Rational Software with contributions from partners such as Microsoft, Oracle, IBM, Hewlett-Packard and MCI Systemhouse, and with the support of thousands of developers worldwide.
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