Where are the zoos?

Towards a metazoo?

The idea of putting open source material at the disposal of the community for various experimentations is apparently having some momentum. The tradition to call these set of resources “zoos” seems to be well established now. What is missing is a global index of zoos. Here are some of the zoos I am aware of:

Very often these zoos are made of raw material, from various origins, that may be used to do various experiments and to report results. For example one may measure some properties of all the grammars or all the metamodels in one zoo. Many research papers mention various empirical experiments that have been performed on these open source zoos.

Do you know other zoos? If yes, just answer this post or twit it. Thanks.

This entry was posted in Grammarware, Modelware, Zoo. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Where are the zoos?

  1. Moritz says:

    for Xtext this link is probably more interesting: https://bugs.eclipse.org/bugs/show_bug.cgi?id=328477

  2. Thanks Jean,
    this is very useful but I think it is important to go from Zoos (which are, as you say very often “made of raw material”) to Wildlife parks.

    In a Zoo, animals are in too small cages and it is hard to understand how they would act in their natural environment. Similarly, if models are just in a repository or ZIP archive, it is hard to understand how they are intended to be used. In a wildlife park, animals live in a setting that more closely resembles their original environment. Then again, the wildlife needs some control, or otherwise bad things could happen to the animals. SHARE (http://www.springerlink.com/content/y1488178640l6412/) is the equivalent of a wildlife park for models: you can investigate models in a remote VM, together will all related modeling software and potentially other contemporary artifacts (the right version of related documentation, some screencasts, a paper, …)

    The SHARE section where the transformation models from TTC 2010 live is documented on http://planet-research20.org/ttc2010/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=110&Itemid=152 and others can be found on http://is.ieis.tue.nl/staff/pvgorp/share/ too.

    Best regards,

    • jbezivin says:


      Your comments make sense and the links you provide are quite relevant. However I do believe there is a need for different kinds of stable spaces for sharing set of artefacts through the community. The name of “zoo” came out of a discussion with Jean-Marie Favre at a Dagsthul workshop. What we may observe is that these sets of artefacts are more and more frequently used in reproducible experiments, to compare different approaches or tools. For example in a set of several hundred metamodels, detect the ones that contains errors or are of bad quality. Let the experimentation continue and let’s discuss the best way to organize these shared data.


      • Hi Jean,
        I fully agree that even without platforms such as SHARE, there is great value in putting data in open access repositories. In this context, I was interviewed recently by the librarians of our university: see http://openaccessweek.org/video/video/listTagged?tag=Gorp. Also, my collegues are working on a process model repository: “APROMORE”, see http://wwwis.win.tue.nl/~wvdaalst/BPMcenter/reports/2009/BPM-09-25.pdf and we have already discussed how SHARE can interact with repositories such as APROMORE. SHARE complements repositories by having all tools related to an experiment optimally configured as well. SHARE supplements repositories by giving temporary and secure access to models (or data in general) that cannot be made available for download from a repository. I will keep you updated about progress in this area and welcome community input as well as questions.


  3. Pingback: Reproducibility of Scientific Results in Software Engineering « Models Everywhere

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