Formal Verification of Annotated Textual Use-Cases

Textual use-cases have been traditionally used in the initial stages of the software development process to describe software functionality from the user’s perspective. Their advantage is that they can be easily understood by stakeholders and domain experts. However, since use-cases typically rely on natural language, they cannot be directly subject to a formal verification. In this article, we present a method (called Formal Verification of Annotated Use-Case Models, FOAM) for formal verification of use-cases. This method features simple user-definable annotations, which are inserted into a use-case to make its semantics more suitable for verification. Subsequently, a model-checking tool is employed to verify temporal invariants associated with the annotations. This way, FOAM allows harnessing the benefits of model checking while still keeping the use-cases understandable for non-experts.

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