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An Introduction to Software Architecture

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journal contribution
posted on 01.01.2006, 00:00 by David Garlan, Mary Shaw
As the size of software systems increases, the algorithms and data structures of the computation no longer constitute the major design problems. When systems are constructed from many components, the organization of the overall system—the software architecture—presents a new set of design problems. This level of design has been addressed in a number of ways including informal diagrams and descriptive terms, module interconnection languages, templates and frameworks for systems that serve the needs of specific domains, and formal models of component integration mechanisms. In this paper we provide an introduction to the emerging field of software architecture. We begin by considering a number of common architectural styles upon which many systems are currently based and show how different styles can be combined in a single design. Then we present six case studies to illustrate how architectural representations can improve our understanding of complex software systems. Finally, we survey some of the outstanding problems in the field, and consider a few of the promising research directions.

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Copyright 2006 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic reproduction and distribution, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.

Date

01/01/2006

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