R. Rodriguez-Echeverria, J. Canovas Izquierdo, J. Cabot, M. Wimmer: Towards a Language Server Protocol Infrastructure for Graphical Modeling, ACM/IEEE 21st International Conference on Model Driven Engineering Languages and Systems (MODELS), Copenhagen, Denmark; 14.10.2018 - 19.10.2018, in Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE 21st International Conference on Model Driven Engineering Languages and Systems (MODELS) 2018, pages 1 - 10. pdf


In Model-Driven Engineering (MDE), models are often expressed following a graphical representation of their concepts and associations. MDE tooling allows developers to create models according to their graphical syntax and subsequently, generate code or other kind of models from them. However, the development of full-fledge graphical modeling tools is a challenging and complex task [18]. These tools usually address specific languages and platforms, as supporting multiple ones is not a viable option given the implementation and integration costs.

Although the advantages of following the path defined by Language Server Protocol (LSP) are clear for IDE development aimed at graphical languages, currently the question about how to do it properly remains open as LSP has been defined without considering graphical languages. Basically, there is no scientific assessment or tool provider position on whether LSP provides enough expressiveness for graphical manipulations, whether it should be extended to support specific features of graphical edition or whether it would be best to ignore LSP in graphical modeling. Furthermore, LSP definition is still an ongoing work, thus it could be the right moment to suggest reasonable adaptations or extensions to provide support for graphical languages.