A modeling language is any artificial language that can be used to express information or knowledge or systems in a structure that is defined by a consistent set of rules. The rules are used for interpretation of the meaning of components in the structure. A modeling language can be graphical or textual. Examples of graphical modelling languages for software design are:
- Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN, and the XML form BPML) is an example of a Process Modeling language.
- EXPRESS and EXPRESS-G (ISO 10303-11) is an international standard general-purpose data modeling language.
- Extended Enterprise Modeling Language (EEML) is commonly used for business process modeling across a number of layers.
- Flowchart is a schematic representation of an algorithm or a stepwise process,
- Fundamental Modeling Concepts (FMC) modeling language for software-intensive systems.
- IDEF is a family of modeling languages, the most notable of which include IDEF0 for functional modeling, IDEF1X for information modeling, and IDEF5 for modeling ontologies.
- Jackson Structured Programming (JSP) is a method for structured programming based on correspondences between data stream structure and program structure
- LePUS3 is an object-oriented visual Design Description Language and a formal specification language that is suitable primarily for modelling large object-oriented (Java, C++, C#) programs and design patterns.
- Unified Modeling Language (UML) is a modeling language to describe software both structurally and behaviorally. It has a graphical notation and allow for extension with a Profile (UML).
A software designer or architect may identify a design problem which has been solved by others before. A template or pattern describing a solution to a common problem is known as a design pattern. The reuse of such patterns can speed up the software development process, having been tested and proved in the past.
Software design documentation may be reviewed or presented to allow constraints, specifications and even requirements to be adjusted prior to programming. Redesign may occur after review of a programmed simulation or prototype. It is possible to design software in the process of programming, without a plan or requirement analysis, but for more complex projects this would not be considered a professional approach. A separate design prior to programming allows for multidisciplinary designers and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to collaborate with highly-skilled programmers for software that is both useful and technically sound. Wikipedia.