Decision spaces in product lines, decision analysis, and design exploration: an interdisciplinary exploratory study
|Year of Publication||
Proceedings of the Eleventh International Workshop on Variability Modelling of Software-intensive Systems, VaMoS 2017, Eindhoven, Netherlands, February 1-3, 2017
Context. From recent works on product properties resulting from configurations and the optimisation of these properties, one comes quickly to more complex challenges such as multi-objective optimisation, conflicting objectives, multiple stakeholders, and conflict resolution. The intuition is that Software Product Line Engineering (SPLE) can draw from other disciplines that deal with decision spaces and complex decision scenarios. Objectives. We aim to (1) explore links to such disciplines, (2) systematise and compare concepts, and (3) identify opportunities, where SPLE approaches can be enriched. Method. We undertake an exploratory study: Starting from common SPLE activities and artefacts, we identify aspects where we expect to find corresponding counterparts in other disciplines. We focus on Multiple Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA), Multi-Objective Optimisation (MOO), and Design Space Exploration (DSE), and perform a comparison of the key concepts. Results. The resulting comparison relates SPLE activities and artefacts to concepts from MCDA, MOO, and DSE and identifies areas where SPLE approaches can be enriched. We also provide examples of existing work at the intersections of SPLE with the other fields. These findings are aimed to foster the conversation on research opportunities where SPLE can draw techniques from other disciplines dealing with complex decision scenarios.