An analytical evaluation of NIAM'S grammar for conceptual schema diagrams

Zhang, Yanchun and Weber, Ron (1996) An analytical evaluation of NIAM'S grammar for conceptual schema diagrams. Information Systems Journal, 6 2: 147-170. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2575.1996.tb00010.x


Author Zhang, Yanchun
Weber, Ron
Title An analytical evaluation of NIAM'S grammar for conceptual schema diagrams
Journal name Information Systems Journal   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1350-1917
1365-2575
Publication date 1996-01-01
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2575.1996.tb00010.x
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 6
Issue 2
Start page 147
End page 170
Total pages 24
Place of publication Chichester, West Sussex, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Nijssen's Information Analysis Method (NIAM) provides a powerful grammar for generating conceptual schema diagrams. We evaluate this grammar systematically using an ontological model proposed by Bunge, Wand and Weber. Our analysis shows NIAM'S grammar has many desirable features. Nevertheless, we conclude it is deficient in three respects. First, we argue that construct overload occurs in NIAM'S grammar. Multiple real-world features are represented by the same grammatical construct in NIAM. As a result, we predict users of NIAM will sometimes be confused about which characteristics of the real world are being represented by NIAM'S overloaded grammatical constructs. Second, we argue that construct redundancy occurs in NIAM. Multiple grammatical constructs can be used to represent the same real-world feature. As a result, we predict users of NIAM will choose to employ only one of the grammatical constructs provided to represent a particular real-world feature. Alternatively, they will equivocate in their choice of a grammatical construct and thus undermine their effectiveness and efficiency in using NIAM. Third, we argue NIAM has construct deficit. Some ontological constructs have no corresponding grammatical construct in NIAM. As a result, we predict users of NIAM will employ other grammars to represent real-world features that cannot be represented by NIAM'S grammar. We predict that using multiple grammars to represent real-world features, however, will evoke other problems associated with attaining consistent representations among the scripts generated via the grammars.
Keyword IS design
IS development
IS grammars
Ontology
Real world modelling
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: UQ Business School Publications
 
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Created: Wed, 10 Dec 2014, 01:34:29 EST by Karen Morgan on behalf of UQ Business School