How to Use TableSpeak™

By Ronald G. Ross

Format: 121 pages / PDF
A Business Rule Solutions Primer

Click to download

Buying a decision management platform does not mean you automatically make good decisions. Learn how to think before you act. Conceive, construct, confirm!

Many decision tables are simply too technical. They are aimed at software developers, not business people. Do they have to be?

No! This Primer shows you how to stay as close as possible to formats intuitive and natural for business people. It emphasizes:

  • Deliberate choice of style.
  • Careful communication of meaning.
  • Protection for integrity.
  • Declarative representation.
  • Single-sourcing.

Decision tables are by no means a perfect form of representation, nor can they be used for a great many business rules. They are not a silver bullet!

In the hands of informed practitioners, however, they can be extremely useful. They fit handily with many implementation platforms, including decision management platforms, and can provide significant ROI.

This Primer is in-depth, readable and completely vendor-neutral. It introduces you to everything you need to know about this high-powered technique. Be informed!

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgements
  • Executive Summary
  • Table of Contents
  • Part 1: The Basics of Decision Tables
    • 1.1 What a Decision Table Is
    • 1.2 The Cases that a Decision Table Addresses
    • 1.3 Structural Styles for Decision Tables
    • 1.4 Basic Advantages of Intersection-Style Decision Tables
    • 1.5 The Meaning (Semantics) of Decision Tables
  • Part 2: Styles of Decision Tables
    • 2.1 Decision Tables with One Consideration
    • 2.2 Intersection-Style Decision Tables with Two Considerations
    • 2.3 Multi-Table Representation of Decision Logic
    • 2.4 Few-Case and Embedded Considerations in Intersection-Style Decision Tables
    • 2.5 Row-or-Column-Style Representation of Decision Tables
    • 2.6 Avoiding Sequence in Decision Tables
  • Part 3: The Integrity of Decision Tables
    • 3.1 Overview of Integrity Concerns
    • 3.2 Exceptions
    • 3.3 Defaults
    • 3.4 Relevance Restrictions
    • 3.5 Consideration Restrictions
    • 3.6 Outcome Restrictions
  • Part 4: Designing Effective Decision Tables for Business
    • 4.1 Decision Tables and Structured Business Vocabulary (Concept Models)
    • 4.2 Using Decision Tables to Represent Procedural Logic
    • 4.3 Converting Procedural Dependencies into Declarative Dependencies
  • Part 5: Designing High-Quality Decision Tables
    • 5.1 TableSpeak Recommendations for Selecting a Representation Style
    • 5.2 Quality Issues for Elemental Cases
    • 5.3 Explicit and Class-Based ORs in Elemental Cases
    • 5.4 TableSpeak Guidelines for Composing Outcomes
    • 5.5 Redundancies, Multiple Outcomes, and Conflicts
    • 5.6 Omissions – Missing Decision Rules
    • 5.7 Preemption Lists and Preemption Tables
    • 5.8 Use of Consideration Restrictions Against Unknowns
    • 5.9 Subsumption in Decision Tables
    • 5.10 Contraction/Expansion of Decision Tables
    • 5.11 Using Outcome Restrictions to Enforce General Rules in Expanded Decision Tables
  • Appendix 1: What TableSpeak Is
  • Appendix 2: Other Kinds of Tables Potentially Useful in Analyzing or Communicating Decision Logic
  • Appendix 3: Illustration and Discussion of One-Rule-Per-Column Decision Tables
  • Appendix 4: Verbalization of Decision Rules
  • Appendix 5: Sample Assessment of the Completeness of A Decision Table
  • Appendix 6: Illustration of the Number of Rows in a one-Rule-per-Row-Style Decision Table
  • Appendix 7: Special Keywords and Symbols in TableSpeak
    • A7.1 About the Meaning of the Special Outcome ‘None’
    • A7.2 About the Meaning of the Special Symbol ‘—’
    • A7.3 About the Meaning of the Special TableSpeak Outcome ‘n/a’
  • Appendix 8: Styles of Decision Tables in Perspective
    • A8.1 Limited Entry Decision Tables
    • A8.2 Extended Entry Decision Tables
  • References
  • Glossary
  • About the Author: Ronald G. Ross
  • About Business Rule Solutions

Format: 121 pages / PDF
A Business Rule Solutions Primer

Click to download