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August 2016: Volume 17, Issue 8
ISSN: 1538-6325


Pattern Questions for Harvesting Business Rules About Geography
By Ronald G. Ross with Gladys S.W. Lam

The key word in understanding business rules for business geography is linkage. By 'linkage', as Ron Ross explains, we mean site-to-site or location-to-location business linkage in the real world (not networks and nodes). Here, issues of transport and logistics play a central role.

Business rules offer a powerful tool for business analysts to understand linkage, transport, logistics, and configuration in 3D space. Pattern questions pertaining to these spatial issues assist not only in capturing related business rules, but also in discussing and resolving related business issues with business stakeholders. This month Ron Ross and Gladys Lam present a targeted set of pattern questions to assist in that regard and illustrate them with practical examples.
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Going Digital — Setting Digital Principles
By Jim Sinur

In order to reach a level of digital business that fits your organization, you need to come up with principles and goals that get you there. Whether you believe that you are a business that just leverages digital or you are a true digital business, you will need a set of principles and goals that can act as tie-breakers in the heat of battle. This month Jim Sinur shares a set of principles that should give your organization a jump-start.
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Logical Data Modeling (Part 7)
By Dr. Terry Halpin

This is the seventh in a series of articles on a logic-based approach to business data and rules using a single language to both create and query data models. The previous article focused on how to declare simple set-comparison constraints (i.e. subset, exclusion, and equality constraints), and exclusive-or constraints. In this month's column, Terry Halpin explains how to declare subset constraints between compound role sequences, including cases involving join paths.

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Focus on What Makes Your Business Smart: From Interpretation to Implementation - Steps 5 – 7: The Technical Steps
By Gladys S.W. Lam

Completing the series Focus on What Makes Your Business Smart: From Interpretation to Implementation, Gladys Lam finishes with Steps 5 – 7, which are the 'Technical Steps': (5) Map Vocabulary to Data, (6) Invoke Tool, and (7) Execute. In these steps, Ms. Lam will

  • illustrate how three different technologies implement the business rules and decisions specified in the earlier steps.

  • show how the business deliverables can be used to validate results.

  • remind business analysts of where they bring the most value.

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OMG Standards in Support of Business Communication
Governance Authors' Web Site

By John Hall

This month, our Standards Reporter, Donald Chapin has turned the pen over to John Hall to report on an upcoming OMG event. Governance documents (however they are stored and accessed) govern what an organization does and how it does it. They also define or imply risks to businesses. To encourage an initiative that supports governance authors (the people in an organization responsible for its governance documents), the OMG is hosting a one-day event "OMG Standards in Support of Business Communication" during its June 2015 technical meeting in Berlin, Germany.
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Process Analysis — Additional Techniques
By Kathy A. Long

In a previous article, "Overview of Analysis Techniques," the Top Five analysis techniques were covered with a promise to provide an overview of additional techniques used by process analysts. This month, Kathy Long covers some of the other analysis techniques and outlines a variety of typical problems found in business processes, aligning those to the techniques introduced in this article. She also briefly discusses which process modeling techniques are the most useful, depending on the type of problem and type of analysis being used
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Applying Agile to Business Rules Elicitation
By Carole-Ann Matignon

Consider this interesting enigma. On one hand, Business Rules are gaining momentum due to the need for Agility in automated systems. On the other hand, despite wide appeal and adoption, the Agile methodology has hardly been applied to BRMS. Is there a way to combine both aspects of modern agile systems? In this month's column, Carole-Ann Matignon shares her thoughts on this.
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Resource Life Cycle Analysis to the Rescue
By Dagmar Cole

RLCA to the Rescue! In the second part of this 3-part series Dagmar Cole explains how she implemented Resource Life Cycle Analysis in two different organizations in response to the need for strategic planning. In this instalment Dagmar provides a high-level overview of what RLCA is (and is not) as well as shares her real-life experience implementing RLCA.
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Do Business Rules Eliminate the Need for Processes?
By Drs. Silvie Spreeuwenberg

Are business processes more important than business rules? Does the use of business rules threaten to replace business processes? In this month's issue of the 'Rule Observatory', Silvie Spreeuwenberg shares a thought experiment that she has found useful in workshops and group settings to get a better understanding of the relationship between business rules and business process.
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The New EA Paradigm
(4) The Assemble-to-Order Pattern

By John A. Zachman

Last month John Zachman continued his series sharing his thoughts about what he thinks "The New Paradigm" for Enterprise Architecture is with a discussion of the 'Provide-from-Stock' Pattern. In this month's segment he wraps up this series with the final strategy pattern, the 'Assemble-to-Order' pattern, in which you have parts (not finished goods) in inventory and then assemble a custom product to order from those parts.
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SBVR Version 1.3 Released
By Donald Chapin

Version 1.3 of the Object Management Group's "Semantics of Business Vocabulary and Business Rules" (SBVR) specification will be publicly available in June. This month, our Standards Reporter, Donald Chapin summarizes the primary improvements made in SBVR v1.3.
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Writing Natural Language Rule Statements — a Systematic Approach Part 31: Even More Rule Statement Quality Criteria
By Graham Witt

In this second series on writing natural language rule statements, Graham Witt takes a holistic and systematic approach to writing natural language rule statements. In the previous two articles he looked at some of the quality criteria that govern rule statements. This month Graham looks at the remaining criteria and wraps up this series with a summary of all the criteria.
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Decision Modeling
Methodology, Notation, and DMN

By Jan Vanthienen

With DMN (the OMG Decision Model and Notation standard) reaching finalization, it is good to examine and highlight the purpose and contribution of DMN. Is it a standard notation, is it a methodology, is it a graphical model, is it an implementation standard, or what is it? In this month's column, Jan Vanthienen identifies the position of DMN, the reasoning behind it, and its relation to other modeling techniques
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Business Decisions, Business Rules, and Business Processes: Oh My!
By Roger T. Burlton

Every few years another concept emerges that raises the hope of analysts and architects that a new solution to all our challenges has arrived. The current buzz is around Business Decisions, but I feel we have to put it all in context. 'Business decisions' are a great new addition to our ability to design great and adaptable businesses. However, they need business processes to have context and relevance to business outcomes. They need business rules to have a connection to strategy, policy, and business risk. All three need to work together. In this month's In Process column, Roger Burlton explains this, in a recap of his contribution to the panel on Business Decisions at the 2013 Building Business Capability conference.
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The Relationship of Decision Model and Notation (DMN) to SBVR and BPMN
By Mark H. Linehan and Christian de Sainte Marie

Several recent publications have popularized the topic of "Decision Modeling" — the modeling of business decision logic for and by business users. The OMG has just released an RFP for a Decision Model and Notation (DMN) specification, but that document says little about how DMN might relate to SBVR and BPMN, and there are many open questions. How do SBVR rules relate to decisions? Is there just one or are there multiple decisions per SBVR rule? Is there more to say about how SBVR and DMN relate to BPMN? This month, Mark Linehan and Christian de Sainte Marie provide their perspective on DMN and how it is positioned in the context of the SBVR and BPMN specifications.
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