UML Comment

7.3.9 Comment (from Kernel)


"1st order" UML Parsing Analysis: stereotyped Comment as a simple source text container related to UML model elements by "handles"

An obvious way to indicate that a UML™ model is derived from (or in some way related to) some source text is to place a Comment on a relevant diagram with some "handles" drawn from the Comment to some "related" elements, as shown in the UML™ Parsing Analysis logo:

A handle from a Comment is however not a true UML Relationship, so I describe the Comment used this way as a non-relatable parsing container, because there is no way to trace from the Comment to the model repository elements (in UML tools the handle information is usually stored in additional tool-specific XMI extensions in a saved model project file).

Although limited, this approach is a good place to start experimenting; the Comment - being a true UML model element - can appear in many different diagrams, and changes in the text content in one place (in the Comment symbol in a diagram, or in the actual Comment element in model browser) propagate to other instances of the symbol.

UML™ Parsing Analysis example diagrams in this Webel site that use the Comment-with-handle approach are indicated with the following "note node", which has links to the diagrams it is applied to (open it in another window or tab) :

UML Parsing Analysis: 1st Order: uses Comments containing source text snippets with loose handle binding to UML analysis elements.

Here is another example:


This "1st Order UML™ Parsing Analysis" approach using Comments with handles is already quite useful - as illustrated by the many examples on this site - however it is ultimately limited by the fact that a handle is not a UML Element - it is merely a graphical symbol - so there is no way of tracing the "relationship" between a source text snippet and analysis elements in the UML model. Nevertheless, readers and students should definitely cut their teeth on UML™ Parsing Analysis with the Comment strategy first.

Where possible, advanced "2nd Order" strategies (such as the use of a Component as relatable parsing container) are preferred, however there are some types of UML diagrams where Classifiers can't be shown, and then a Comment with a handle must be used.
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