2.2 Translational versus elaborational approaches

Another important way in which we may classify object-oriented methods is as either translational or elaborational. Methods like Booch, OMT and RUP are evangelistically elaborational. They treat the passage from specification to implementation as a matter of creating an initial model and then adding more and more detail (elaborating) until eventually we press a button and the compiled code pops out.

Translational approaches, among which Shlaer-Mellor was the paradigm, regard the process as a sequence of separate models together with a procedure for linking them and translating from one to the next. Thus we can use the most appropriate modelling techniques and viewpoints at each stage of our thinking about the problem but still guarantee seamlessness and traceability. Catalysis and SOMA fall inter alia into this camp and the next section will exemplify the approach.