EMF Compare - User Experience Matters


The modeling community needs tools to support collaborative modeling. In this regard, EMF Compare continues to evolve in order to address users’ needs when comparing and merging EMF models.
It turns out that comparing and merging models is not only technically complex: It is also hard for users to understand the differences between model versions and the consequences of merging them. In the case of model comparison, user experience is a major challenge: users care about understandability, responsiveness, and last but not least, reliability.
Achieving a good user experience is yet more crucial when tools mask some complexity to improve user efficiency. The modifications actually performed in the background are then more numerous and complex than perceived by the user. For instance, how should EMF Compare help users understand the differences between their models when a single operation like creating a UML association between two classes in two clicks actually generates several differences at the same time?

More generally, how does EMF Compare facilitate the management of complex changes:
- closing the gap between the high-level changes applied by the user in the modeling editor and the low-level changes actually detected in the model;
- reliably merging related changes in a consistent manner;
- efficiently supporting users in the difficult process of merging parallel and potentially conflicting changes.

In the past two years, work on EMF Compare has been focused on such questions.
In this talk, we will answer them by presenting the improvements shipped with EMF Compare 3.1.0 that's coming for the Eclipse Mars release.