Excel Software, which provides modeling tools for development work, has upgraded MacA&D, its software design tool for the Mac to version 7.3. The update adds XML support, integrated test documents, more flexible requirements traceability, and enhancements to its scriptable HTML reports.
XML (eXtensible Markup Language) has become an industry standard for exchanging information that’s “human readable,” platform independent, and somewhat self-explanatory, according to
MacTech magazine. XML is stored in a text file using tagged data values and is supported by a wide range of editors, browsers, parsers, and other third party tools.
All MacA&D design documents can be listed as XML files or imported from XML files. This includes class models, object models, state models, process models, structure models, data models, task models, screen models, data dictionary, and requirements.
Developers create test designs and procedures to provide structure to the testing process. MacA&D adds the ability to create test documents with a built-in text editor or by configuring it to use another application like Microsoft Word. Test documents can be linked to requirements and use case entries or to diagram objects.
Large projects are often partitioned into many documents, spread across multiple folders containing thousands of linked objects so MacA&D has link management features for integrating project data. Requirement and use case entries can be linked to design models, text specifications, code files, HTML files, test documents, foreign documents or to other requirement entries.
MacA&D’s HTML report generator provides a way to generate standard and custom reports of project data. The scriptable report generator adds features for XML and test documents. New XML scripting tags allow any piece of data from any MacA&D document to be included in a generated report. Likewise, information from test documents or links between documents can be included.
To use MacA&D, you’ll need a Mac with 64MB RAM and Mac OS 7.0 or later (no word on a Mac OS X version). It comes in four product editions: Standard, US$495; Desktop, $1,295; Educational, $845; and Developer $1,995. Site license pricing and online ordering are available.