sadnan's picture

Thanks @Sebestian, I am working on very very cool stuffs right now.

On more serious note, one of thing that I am working on, is to generate Real and Dynamic Catalog Models.

Seemingly innocuous term "Catalog" is not that simple.

In daily life, Catalog is defined as "List of homogeneous objects/entities" this is academic definition of catalog for instance Catalog of Car, as per common understanding, this will include, list of cars with possibly their attributes such as make, picture,cost but the core concept behind Catalog that it is List/Set of one type of objects and it must be indexed based upon some of the properties of enclosed object within list (Indexed by Name, Year, Type etc. whatever is desired)

As per TOGAF9 specification: (courtesy of OpenGroup TOGAF9)

"Catalogs are lists of building blocks of a specific type, or of related types, that are used for governance or reference purposes (for example, an organization chart, showing locations and actors). As with building blocks, catalogs carry metadata according to the metamodel, which supports query and analysis."

TOGAG9 has also defined a set of Standard Catalogs/Matrices/Diagrams and some of them are:

Catalogs:

  • Application Architecture: Applications Portfolio Catalog, Interface Catalog
  • Business Architecture: Contract-Measure Catalog, Driver-Goal-Objective Catalog, Location Catalog, Organization-Actor Catalog, Process-Event-Control-Product Catalog, Role Catalog, Service-Function Catalog
  • Data Architecture: Data Entity-Data Component Catalog
  • Preliminary: Principles Catalog
  • Requirements: Requirements Catalog
  • Technology Architecture: Technology Portfolio Catalog, Technology Standards Catalog

Matrices:

  • Application Architecture: Application Interaction Matrix, Role-System Matrix, System-Function Matrix, System-Organization Matrix
  • Architecture Vision: Stakeholder Map Matrix
  • Business Architecture: Actor Role Matrix, Business Interaction Matrix
  • Data Architecture: Data Entity-Business Function Matrix, System-Data Matrix
  • Technology Architecture: System-Technology Matrix

You can generate a simple report (PDF/WORD/HTML) to list all of the applications,projects,processes,functions,business-services and you will be able to sort them based upon it's attributes. This is very simple task in ARIS through Report Wizard. But the above mentioned catalogs/matrices are dynamic and ever-changing. No-one can guarantee that application catalog is final or list of business processes is complete but you can say that IT System Catalog contains IT System Objects upto this date etc (so you need to associate dates with catalog). Then you periodically generate catalog reports and named it based upon dates. I would like to point-out that these are reports not catalog. Catalog in my understanding, provides ability or facilitate users to browse and in ARIS case (with reports) it's just static text and he cannot jump to other objects types, let say user spotted an application and then he wants to get information about which business service is supported by application etc, so when I say "Catalog" it meant that "Ordered and Browsable List of Homogenous Objects" and when I say browsable it means it should be part of EA Repository so user can jump around from objects to objects.

I am not against reports but I am trying to highlight difference between a catalog, report and catalog report.

To summarize the above discussion, to have real catalogs not reports, you must create a model to store homogeneous object types (in case of UMG DB they named it Application Inventory)

But overtime you will realize that it's hard to keep the above model updated. New systems will be added as with the case of Processes, Business Services, Peope, Organizations etc.

...continued......

Tags: EA Enterprise Architecture