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Title:LSCs: Breathing Life into Message Sequence Charts
Authors: Werner Damm ; David Harel
Date:Jul 2001
Publication Title:Formal Methods in System Design
Publisher:Springer Netherlands
Publication Type:Journal Article Publication Status:Published
Volume No:19 (1) Page Nos:45-80
DOI:10.1023/A:1011227529550 ISBN/ISSN:0925-9856
While message sequence charts (MSCs) are widely used in industry to document the interworking of processes or objects, they are expressively weak, being based on the modest semantic notion of a partial ordering of events as defined, e.g., in the ITU standard. A highly expressive and rigorously defined MSC language is a must for serious, semantically meaningful tool support for use-cases and scenarios. It is also a prerequisite to addressing what we regard as one of the central problems in behavioral specification of systems: relating scenario-based inter-object specification to state-machine intra-object specification. This paper proposes an extension of MSCs, which we call live sequence charts (or LSCs), since our main extension deals with specifying liveness , i.e., things that must occur. In fact, LSCs allow the distinction between possible and necessary behavior both globally, on the level of an entire chart and locally, when specifying events, conditions and progress over time within a chart. This makes it possible to specify forbidden scenarios, for example, and enables naturally specified structuring constructs such as subcharts, branching and iteration.
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Bibtex format
author = { Werner Damm and David Harel },
title = {LSCs: Breathing Life into Message Sequence Charts},
journal = {Formal Methods in System Design},
publisher = {Springer Netherlands},
year = 2001,
month = {Jul},
volume = {19 (1)},
pages = {45-80},
doi = {10.1023/A:1011227529550},
url = {},

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