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Posts Tagged ‘John Zachman’

Announcing The Business Agility Manifesto

Capture-BAMAnnouncing: The Business Agility Manifesto released Sept 8, 2017 by John Zachman, Roger Burlton and myself. Have a look! https://busagilitymanifesto.org/  

The 3 of us will formally introduce the Manifesto for the first time at the Building Business Capability (BBC) conference Nov. 6-10 in Orlando, FL. Be there to hear all about it and to discuss! http://www.buildingbusinesscapability.com/

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The Gigantic Logjam

A reader of my blog observed that rulebook management often faces the same organizational challenges as business architecture. So true. Some 30,000-foot thoughts about why it’s so hard so get organizations to adopt them …

1. John Zachman says enterprises (organizations) are the most complicated things ever invented by humans. Now I can think of some things that are pretty darn complicated … say nuclear weapons … but ultimately they reduce to mathematical equations. Businesses don’t. He’s probably right.

2. We’ve been at automating enterprises for how long? Say 50 years? Only one generation. Our generation (well, mine anyway). There might be a few things we haven’t figured out yet?!

3. The power of computers has increased faster than our imagination about how to use them. Add to that the huge inertia faced in changing the current skill base (much less the current legacy portfolios themselves) and it all adds up to … a gigantic logjam.

And that’s where we sit today. Management feels pain, but they can’t diagnose the real sources of the pain. IT knows … well … IT. The economics of the current scheme no longer produce real value except at the edges of operations (e.g., analytics, social media, etc.). And the current infrastructure is no longer scalable or sustainable cost-wise. Logjam. But what happens in a logjam? Pressure builds up and eventually it bursts. So let me repeat my prediction made a few posts back … and add that something equivalent will eventually happen for business architecture.

>> In the long run the whole equation will change. The fundamental problem lies with the fact that business rules still have to be programmed. (Even production rules are programming.) Take programmers out of the business of implementing rules, put business analysts and skilled writers in their place (with appropriate tools), and the current economics of rule management (and IT as a whole) can be improved by at least an order of magnitude. At least!

Entrepreneurs will eventually see the opportunity. (I just hope some of them are in North America.)

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The Debate Continues … Business Rules in Zachman 3.0 … and the Upcoming Business Architecture Summit at BBC2011

At the Business Architecture Summit in Ft. Lauderdale (BBC2011 – Oct 31 – Nov 4) I will be joining John Zachman and Roger Burlton for one of our rabble-raising 3Amigo sessions. The session is only an hour long, so I’m sure there will be some fast talking(!). One of the first questions I want John to address is: “Where are the business rules in Zachman 3.0?” The following recent exchange represents my current understanding on the matter. I plan to come back on the record after the event to say what I got right and what I got wrong. Question: Can rules address more than one primitive (column) in the Framework? My Answer: Yes, atomic rules can address multiple primitives – e.g., An accounting must be given by the CFO in Delaware on March 15, 2012. (By ‘atomic’ I mean ‘can’t be reduced into two or more rules without losing meaning.’) In this rule you have a thing (‘accounting’), a person (the CFO), a place (Delaware), and a date (March 15, 2012). So even atomic rules are composites, not primitives. Question: Does rules not being a primitive mean that business rules shouldn’t be treated as a first-class citizen? My Answer: What ‘first-class citizen’ has always meant in the Business Rule Manifesto (http://www.businessrulesgroup.org/brmanifesto.htm) and elsewhere is that business rules shouldn’t be subordinate to other kinds of requirements for system design in general, and to what I call ‘Big-P’ processes in particular. Big-P processes are not primitive (think ‘input-process-output’), but rather they amalgamate (think ‘mash-up’) some or even all the other primitives. In other words, Big-P processes are also composite. Composites are about the configuration of the enterprise at any point in time. Business rules are one candidate for that capacity. I believe business rules are a far better choice in that regard than Big-P processes (think ‘business agility’). In any case, business rules being a composite in no way diminishes their importance. The enterprise is not built on primitives alone. If you had only primitives, there would be no configuration, and literally no enterprise.

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Zachman Framework 3.0 Announced Tues, Aug. 23 … Quick Notes

Here’s a zipped pdf of the new 3.0 version of the Zachman Framework (with permission): ZF3.0.zip [approx 1.5M]. An official version will be posted on http://www.zachman.com soon. Visit Zachman’s new website for the latest!  Our Editor for BRCommunity.com, Keri Anderson Healy, attended the announcement event – she reports an excellent turnout. The following are some quick first-look notes from Keri (my own comments appear in brackets). 
  • The Framework has a new subtitle: The Enterprise Ontology (TM). Zachman considered changing the main title word “Framework” to “Ontology” but decided to stay with the former. 

[Keri and I both think that was a good decision.]

  • Some new terms appear as replacements, aiming to better convey the ‘business’ message. Zachman explains:

“Because I came from an ‘information’ community I had initially used words like ‘data’ in column 1. Big mistake!  People thought the Framework was about IT! The first thing people saw was the word ‘data’.

[The Framework has always been about business engineering – that was clear even from the earliest talks I heard Zachman give in the late 1980s and early 1990s. In truth, I would have never guessed it would still be an issue 20+ years later.]

  • Faint grey lines now appear crossing column boundaries in a row. These new connections better convey that the Framework supports two kinds of models: engineering (the primitives) and manufacturing (the composites).

The Framework is well-known for its depiction of the engineering primitives (the columns, which are normalized – one thing in one place). The engineering models, however, don’t do anything in and of themselves. The enterprise also needs its manufacturing models – the composites. So these new faint gray lines have been added as a reminder that the composite models also exist and they are also important.

Note: These new faint gray lines are meant as ‘for example’ connections. In this sense they are like the examples shown in the Framework for the primitives in the columns.

  • Adjustments have been made to row 6 to better convey what it is about. In early versions of the Framework graphic, row 6 was depicted as just a sliver. It has always been ‘the enterprise’. Row 6 is different in nature from the five rows above it, which are engineering specifications for things in the enterprise, rather than the actual things themselves     
  • The rows are now color-coded and each cell icon reflects the color theme of its row. At the request of various Framework users, however, the background coloring has been removed from the cells of rows 1-5 so users can annotate their own specifics over the cell graphics.      
  • For rows 1-5, the color progression is red, orange, yellow, green, blue. Rather than the next-in-series indigo, row 6 is color-coded orange emphasizing that it represents the realization of what row 2 specifies.

[The row 2 / row 6 alignment is consistent with the business-engineering theme that Zachman so ably promotes.]

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