One important aspect of product lifecycle management (PLM) is the computer-sensible representation of product information. Over the past 15 years or so, several languages and technologies have emerged that vary in their emphasis and applicability for such usage. ISO 10303, informally known as the Standard for the Exchange of Product Model Data (STEP), contains the high-quality product information models needed for electronic business solutions. By using STEP, the aerospace, automotive, and shipbuilding industries are saving $150M/yr primarily in areas related to geometric modeling. However, traditional STEP-based model information is represented using languages that are unfamiliar to most application developers, thus impeding widespread usage in other areas. This paper discusses efforts underway to make STEP information models available via mechanisms familiar to more business application developers, specifically XML and the Unified Modeling Language™ (UML®). We also present a vision and roadmap for STEP integration with XML, UML, and other technologies to enable enhanced PLM interoperability. Our conclusion is that STEP, XML, and UML are complementary technologies, where STEP provides significant standardized content models, while XML and UML provide enhanced implementation methods. Together, they are a powerful force to enable pervasive digital representation and sharing of diverse technical information.
STEP, XML, and UML: Complementary Technologies1
Contributed by the Engineering Informatics (EIX) Committee for publication in the JOURNAL OF COMPUTING AND INFORMATION SCIENCE IN ENGINEERING. Manuscript received May 8, 2004; Revised September 18, 2004. Associate Editor: R. Rangan.
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Peak , R. S., Lubell , J., Srinivasan , V., and Waterbury , S. C. (January 4, 2005). "STEP, XML, and UML: Complementary Technologies." ASME. J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng. December 2004; 4(4): 379–390. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.1818683
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