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Tuesday, 23 March 2010 14:06

Data Mapping in UML

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It’s often the case that we need to map various attributes on entities into other entities. For example you might need to migrate data from one system to another and structurally the same concepts are held slightly differently. Documenting these mappings is not obvious in the UML, so below I’ve provided a simple example of how a composite structure diagram could be used to provide the mappings. Some notes have been added where conversions need to be performed and these could be represented more formally using diagram references to behavioural diagrams such as sequence or activity diagrams. This is quite possibly not 100% UML compliant / intended usage; but it provides a tool for this type of mapping which otherwise seems to be lacking in the standard UML specification.

Note: The collaboration represents the concept being mapped (in this case a customer/client) and is source / target agnostic.

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Read 22705 times Last modified on Thursday, 05 March 2015 09:59

Sam Nice

Dunstan Thomas Consulting


  • Comment Link Kevin Monday, 10 November 2014 03:37 posted by Kevin

    The answers after much Googling
    The attributes or operations do not need any amendment
    Any type of connector can be used.

    The key is "Link to Element Feature" where the connector is linked to a specific feature. see http://www.sparxsystems.com/enterprise_architect_user_guide/9.0/modeling_basics/connect_to_element_feature.html

  • Comment Link Kevin Monday, 10 November 2014 02:40 posted by Kevin

    This is the best example I have found for showing mappings between objects in EA. But I cannot reproduce the diagram. I see from the description that a Composite Structure diagram is used but I have some questions:
    What do the open box represent next to the structure members, and how are these added to a class
    What kind of connector is used?

    The connectors look like a dependency, but I can only associate the dependency with the class, not a specific field or property of a class.

    Being able to reproduce this style of diagram would very useful to document the mappings in the integration work I am doing.

  • Comment Link Viking Thursday, 17 July 2014 06:14 posted by Viking

    Thank you very much.

    Could you povide further information? Do you have an idea how to describe mappings with the propsed behavioural diagrams? Would it be precise enough to use it for ORM (object relational mapping) resp. to generate code out of the description?

  • Comment Link jdbaker@computer.org Wednesday, 25 June 2014 12:06 posted by [email protected]

    Thanks - this is something I need to do soon. Beyond the act of creating the map can you tell us how it was used? Are there methods for querying and exploiting the mappings?

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