An unexpected journey, and not Bilbo’s one

In my life, I’ve always been craving for travels, visiting places, experiencing arts and seeing new things.
I never appreciated those kinds of holidays where you just sit and do nothing, I liked doing trips and sightseeing, I liked coming back from holidays more tired than then I left.

Still, we know life is always full of surprises. When I spent a few months in Cisco, CA, I was thinking that could be my first and last abroad experience. But then, I discovered our work puts us on the road all the time.

I ended up feeling like sort of a missionary of model-driven solutions, software methods, and so on.
I know locations of all shops and business in most of the airport terminals of Europe, US and more.
Airports are kind of second home, and I’m hopping from plane to plane every time.

So, the journey was unexpected (poor Bilbo Baggins!) and it’s also likely to be lifelong.
Luckily enough, I’m not at the point of George Clooney in Up in the air (and I’m not George Clooney either, despite living some 10 km from his villa). [aside: I suggest you see that movie anyway]

But a question raises here anyway:
is this journey leading somewhere?

I’m not talking about my traveling only anymore here: I’m wondering about the model-driven journey at large, for the entire field.

This existential question is something we all should wonder about. Are we just wandering or do we see a trend or direction that MDE is taking toward success and adoption?

From my side, looking back to my last 10 years of MDE experience, I’d like to say that I actually see some advancement to happen.
MDE is more recognized today, big companies are adopting more and more model-driven or at least model-based practices, business and IT are converging on communication based on models.

My last trip brought me to L’Aquila, the wonderful small Italian city that has been known world-wide for the major earthquake that did so much damage three years ago. That has been a special trip actually: great place, mountains, food, and people, and also the unique experience of walking amid ancient breached buildings, deserted streets in the ghost downtown, military patrolled “red zone”, and people that strive to go back to normal life.

I had the opportunity of presenting “our MDE success story” on WebML and WebRatio at the University of L’Aquila, where great people are pushing the rebirth of the research, teaching and city life at large. That made me think to this journey and condense my thoughts in a presentation you can see below (and on Slideshare). The interesting thing here is that, besides some lesson learnt, you can find some factual, quantitative data there!

The presentation is also partially reporting on a paper that has been recently accepted in a Special issue on MDE Success Stories edited by Richard Paige, Alfonso Pierantonio, and Davide Di Ruscio on Elsevier’s Science of Computer Programming Journal. But I’ll be back with more details on this later.

What I would like to ask now is: Do you see that MDE is getting somewhere? Or are we stuck in the Dead Marshes?

To keep updated on my activities you can subscribe to the RSS feed of my blog or follow my twitter account (@MarcoBrambi).

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