M. Brambilla, S. Ceri, I. Celino, D. Cerizza, E. Della Valle, F. M. Facca, A. Turati, C. Tziviskou: "Experiences in the Design of Semantic Services Using Web Engineering Methods and Tools". Journal of Data Semantics (JODS), vol. 11: pp. 1-31, December 2008.
Although Semantic Web Services are expected to produce a revolution in the development of Web-based systems, very few concrete design experiences are available; only recently, Software Engineering methods and tools have started to embrace the deployment of Semantic Web applications. In this paper, we show how classical Software Engineering methods (i.e., formal business process development, computer-aided and component-based software design, and automatic code generation) combine with semantic methods and tools (i.e., ontology engineering, semantic service annotation and discovery) to forge a new approach to software development for the Semantic Web. In particular, we present our experience in the participation to the Semantic Web Service (SWS) challenge 2006, where the proposed approach achieved very good results in solving the proposed problems.
M. Brambilla, S. Ceri, S. Comai, P. Fraternali. "A CASE tool for modelling and automatically generating web service-enabled applications", Int. J. Web Engineering and Technology (IJWET), Volume 2, Number 4, pp. 354 - 372, 2006.
This paper presents a CASE tool for the high-level specification of web applications integrated with web services. The CASE tool is based on WebML, a conceptual modelling language used for the specification of the front end of web applications. WebML, extended with new primitives for modelling web services, allows one to specify complex interactions between a web application, driven by the user, and remote processes, represented by services. The CASE tool also allows the specification and deployment of application functionalities as web services and automatically generates the running code, including web pages, web services calls and the exposed web services. In this paper, we describe the primitives for web services modelling, the architecture of the CASE tool for designing the applications, and the runtime architecture of the generated applications. Finally, we give an overview of some industrial applications developed with the described approach.
M. Brambilla, C. Tziviskou. "Fundamentals Of Exception Handling Within Workflow-Based Web Applications", Journal of Web Engineering (JWE), March 2005. Vol.4, Issue 1, pp. 38-56.
As the Web becomes a platform for implementing B2B applications, the need arises of extending Web conceptual modeling from data-centric applications to data- and process-centric applications. New primitives must be put in place to implement workflows describing business processes. In this context, new problems about process safety arise, due to the loose control on Web clients. Indeed, user behavior can generate dangerous incoherencies for the execution of processes. This paper presents a proposal of workflow-enabling primitives for Web applications, and a high level approach to the management of exceptions that occurs during execution of processes. We present a classification of exceptions that can occur inside workflow-based Web applications, and recovery policies to retrieve coherent status and data after an exception. An implementation experience is briefly presented too.
M. Brambilla, S. Ceri, S. Comai, P. Fraternali, I. Manolescu. "Specification and design of workflow-driven hypertexts", Journal of Web Engineering (JWE), Rinton Press, 1(2) April, 2003, pp. 163-182.
While the Web consolidates as the ubiquitous application delivery platform, the features of Web applications evolve to cover new requirements, like the capability of managing complex workflows spanning multiple users and organizations. This scenario challenges the Web engineering methods to address a broader class of applications. This paper introduces workflow-driven hypertexts, defined as Web-enabled hypertextual applications serving the workflow of multiple users, and proposes a design method integrating data, hypertext, and workflow modeling concepts for modeling lightweight Webenabled workflows; this approach extends the benefits of high-level conceptual modeling and automatic code generation to a much broader class of Web applications.
S. Ceri, M. Brambilla, P. Fraternali: "The History of WebML Lessons Learned from 10 Years of Model-Driven Development of Web Applications". In book: Conceptual Modeling: Foundations and Applications, Essays in honor of John Mylopoulos, Springer LNCS, Festschrift series, vol. 5600, 2009, pp. 273-292
This work presents a retrospective analysis on the conceptual modeling language for Web applications called WebML, which was first defined about 10 years ago. WebML has been an incubator for research on conceptual modeling, exploiting existing experiences in the field and continuously addressing new challenges concerning abstractions, methods, tools, and technologies. People working on WebML are spread among universities, technology transfer centres, and a spin-off. In this paper, we illustrate the history of WebML, we summarize the essence of the approach, and we sketch the main research branches that spawned from the initial proposal. We describe how new trends in research, application development, methodology, and tool prototyping led to the continuous growth of the modeling language.
A Software Engineering Approach based on WebML and BPMN to the Mediation Scenario of the SWS Challenge
M. Brambilla, S. Ceri, E. Della Valle, F. M. Facca, C. Tziviskou "A Software Engineering Approach based on WebML and BPMN to the Mediation Scenario of the SWS Challenge", In book: Semantic Web Services Challenge - Results from the First Year. Series: Semantic Web and Beyond , Vol. 8. Petrie, C.; Lausen, H.; Zaremba, M.; Margaria-Steffen, T. (Eds.). Springer, ISBN 978-0-387-72495-9, pages 51-70, 2009.
Although Semantic Web Services are expected to produce a revolution in the development of Web-based systems, very few enterprise-wide design experiences are available; one of the main reasons is the lack of sound Software Engineering methods and tools for the deployment of Semantic Web applications. In this chapter, we present an approach to software development for the Semantic Web based on classical Software Engineering methods (i.e., formal business process development, computer-aided and component-based software design, and automatic code generation) and on semantic methods and tools (i.e., ontology engineering, semantic service annotation and discovery).
M. Zaremba, R. Zaharia, A. Turati, M. Brambilla, T. Vitvar and S. Ceri. "Comparison: Mediation Solutions of WSMOLX and WebML/WebRatio", In book: Semantic Web Services Challenge - Results from the First Year. Series: Semantic Web and Beyond , Vol. 8. Petrie, C.; Lausen, H.; Zaremba, M.; Margaria-Steffen, T. (Eds.). Springer, ISBN 978-0-387-72495-9, pages 141-152, 2009.
In this chapter we compare the WSMO/WSML/WSMX andWebML/WebRatio approaches to the SWS-Challenge workshop mediation scenario in terms of the utilized underlying technologies and delivered solutions. In the mediation scenario one partner uses Roset-taNet to define its B2B protocol while the other one operates on a proprietary solution. Both teams shown how these partners could be semantically integrated.
M. Brambilla, S. Ceri, E. Della Valle, F. M. Facca, C. Kubczak, T. Margaria, B. Steffen, C. Winkler. "Comparison: Mediation on WebML/WebRatio and jABC/jETI", In book: Semantic Web Services Challenge - Results from the First Year. Series: Semantic Web and Beyond , Vol. 8. Petrie, C.; Lausen, H.; Zaremba, M.; Margaria-Steffen, T. (Eds.). Springer, ISBN 978-0-387-72495-9, pages 153-166, 2009.
In this chapter we compare two solutions to the mediation scenario of the SWS challenge that are based on the use of WebML  and of the jABC [2, 3] as modeling and execution platforms. In particular, first we give a general overview of the differences among the to approaches, and then we compare in the details the two solutions for the SWS challenge.
M. Brambilla, F. M. Facca. "Building Semantic Web Portals with a Model-Driven Design Approach". In book: Semantic Web Engineering in the Knowledge Society. J. Cardoso, M. Lytras (Eds.). Chapter IV, pages 76-106. Idea Group Inc (IGI), 2008 ISBN 1605661120, 9781605661124
This chapter presents an extension to Web application conceptual models toward Semantic Web. Conceptual models and model-driven methodologies are widely applied to the development of Web applications because of the advantages they grant in terms of productivity and quality of the outcome. Although some of these approaches are meant to address Semantic Web applications too, they do not fully exploit the whole potential deriving from interaction with ontological data sources and from semantic annotations. The authors claim that Semantic Web applications represent an emerging category of software artifacts, with peculiar characteristics and software structures, and hence need some specific methods and primitives for achieving good design results. In particular the contribution presented in this chapter is an extension of the WebML modeling framework that fulfils most of the design requirements emerging in the new area of Semantic Web. The authors generalize the development process to cover Semantic Web needs and devise a set of new primitives for ontology importing and querying. The chapter presents also a comparison of the proposed approach with the most relevant existing proposals and positioned with respect to the background and adopted technologies.
M. Brambilla, S. Comai, P. Fraternali, M. Matera. "Designing Web Applications with WebML and WebRatio". In book: Web Engineering: Modelling and Implementing Web Applications. G. Rossi, O. Pastor, D. Schwabe, L. Olsina (Eds.). Springer, Human-Computer Interaction Series, November 2007, ISBN: 978-1846289224, pp. 221-261.
In this Chapter, we describe the Web Modelling Language, a conceptual notation for specifying the design of complex, distributed, multi-actor, and adaptive applications deployed on the Web and on Service Oriented Architectures using Web Services. We also illustrate how WebML has spun-off to the industrial context, where it has faced the development of complex systems with requirements often exceeding the expressive power of the language. This interplay of academic design and industrial experience has driven the evolution of the language from a closed notation for data-centric Web applications to an open and extensible framework for generalized component-based development.