Open Source Enterprise Architecture tool

During my UML modeling days, this question always stuck me with no answer. When you define a class, let me take an example as  male, you inherit a super class called human. All human attributes will be made available to male class. Then you define sub class like infant, child, teen, middle aged, aged etc.. inheritance takes the attributes from its super class. When you instantiate an object like middle aged male and let the name of the object be “Joe the plumber“, the object, Joe the plumber will have all the attributes defined in all of his class and his super classes. For generalization of the attributes of an object, UML has been doing an exemplary job. However, Joe the plumber is not same as all middle aged male. He has some unique attributes that most of plumber nor middle aged male does not have it. How to capture the unique attributes in the model. UML models completely failed to capture the attribute for an unique case or object.

We have seen marketing ads and commericals in TV that personalization is key for this and next generation marketing and sales. Each individual customers are targeted for promoting a product or service. Three to four years ago, I initiated my search to seek what industry is doing to address personalization design and that is when I ended with OWL, Protege.

Protege is an ontology tool. Ontology is few thousand  years old concept. I think it started from Ancient Greeks. Ontology is a presentation of knowledge. Immediately I became the registered member of Protege and have been using it (Frequency -> 1 hour a month, an average) for last 3-4 years. It is a very good tool to present information asset in the organization. It is easy to use once you spend significant amount of time to understand the concept and usage. I believe it will take some time to be ready for commercial use with idiot proof user interface.

Lately, I came to know that there is an open source enterprise architect plugin developed for Protege. It is called EssentialProject. It is a good enterprise architecture ontology editor. You can download it from enterprise site.

An Evaluation Matrix for an Enterprise Architect

Some times, a simple concept may be crystal clear to you in your mind, but, it may be difficult to grasp by the audience. Enterprise Architects must continuously work on the soft skills to communicate a message successfully irrespective of the audience knowledge level. In that regard, an evaluation matrix for an enterprise architect is given below.

  • Perform the necessary action to meet the given objective and unable to communicate to the necessary stakeholders = FAILED,  as an enterprise architect to meet the mission
  • Does not perform the necessary action to meet the given objective & unable to communicate to the necessary stakeholders = FAILED, as an enterprise architect to meet the mission
  • Does not perform the necessary action to meet the given objective = FAILED, as an enterprise architect to meet the mission
  • Perform the necessary action to meet the given objective and able to communicate to the necessary stakeholders = SUCCESSFUL, as an enterprise architect to meet the mission

A set of soft skill must be possessed by an enterprise architect to be a successful enterprise architect. Enterprise architect must be able to connect to the application team, infrastructure team, IT finance team, IT procurement team, business teams, senior management, executive management and others.

Future AAS

Cloud computing is in the horizon. The topic has come to architects and strategist for a consideration and discussion.  It is not in the research paper any more. It is viable to any enterprise as a technological innovative solution  for cost efficiency, speed and agility.

At this time, I should say, all the enterprise architects, strategist and IT leaders are familiar with SaaS model. is a prime example of a successful SaaS model and the trust index for this business model has transformed to trust worthy due to its success.

A successful business model is always twicked and fine tuned for an another business model in a different market segment. Saas is not an exception. SaaS concept has been extropolated to other areas and there are quite a few “Aas” prolifirated so far. Here are the few..

  • Infrastructure As a Service (IaaS)
  • Platform as a Service (Paas)
  • Database as a Service (Daas)
  • STorage as a service (STaas)
  • E-mail as a Service (EaaS)
  • Desktop as a Service (DEaas)
  • ERP as a service (ERaaS)

and this list is expected to grow. IaaS and Paas sounds the same but there is a subtle difference between IaaS and PaaS. PaaS provides a platform with a set of APIs to develop applications. GoogleApp engine is a prime example of PaaS whereas Iaas provides a stack of hardware infrastructre like servers, database, network, web server, application server and etc.

Amazon is a leader in the cloud computing space. No surprise that Amazon made lots of money in the tough economy but also they projected better outlook in future. Amazon stock would become like apple or google stock.