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Messages - Tom_Andries

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Suggestions and Requests / Exploding diagrams
« on: August 15, 2005, 06:00:23 am »
When defining a subactivity, a doubleclick opens a diagram to detail it out. Unless the subactivity is repeated on that subdiagram, then EA very intelligently opens up the specs for that activity!

However, seems like this link gets established only once at the creation of the subactivity. Some playing around with diagrams and it gets lost (like creating a same named diagram on your own).

Is'nt it possible to generalize this - be it as a parametrizable -behaviour?

It would be nice to have the one child diagram open on double-click (even when this child is added later), or the list of child dgm's appear (on double click, as list added to the context menu, ... whatever)


Of course I was lying when I said I'd keep ANY tool away from such a session.
One tool beats them all when it comes to workshops: Mimio! I've read about it in an article from Lary Constantine, and ordered one right away. This tool captures a whole whiteboard session. Neat is that you can play back and forth and reuse those snapshots that present a consensus in ppt or html, ...
But when it comes to structuring, nothing beats EA!

Suggestions and Requests / Re: CRC card diagram
« on: April 24, 2004, 12:45:04 am »
While I can understand it would be easy to include these artifacts in EA for integration and document purposes, I expect it to be rather a way to take notes after a CRC Card session. I would keep EA (or any tool othre then the cards) miles away from a CRCCard session!
Obviously when integrating CRCCArds, their elements need to linkable to other modeling elements (like you can with requirements) ...

Suggestions and Requests / Re: Custom emf for "lollipop" notation?
« on: April 24, 2004, 12:24:29 am »
This thing with connectors not being able to be stereotyped, I find it quite inconsistent.
Apart from all meta modeling issues, the general question is whether you want a standard notation that is universal or a tuned notation that is specfic to it's goal. Being an engineering matter, it's typically a trade off to make.

Whether or not opening up for more flexibility would kill MDA and the like, only depends on HOW you do that. Indeed sematics need to be respected.

Changing the cup/lollipop connector notation would make the diagram illegal UML.

 Opening up for more "flexibility" here would be the immediate end of model-driven development.


Suggestions and Requests / Re: Priority for use cases
« on: April 24, 2004, 12:16:06 am »
Not to downplay the importance of Use Cases, but when you don't get to educate your business analysts, you might e.g. recieve a word document with a process perspective, an operational perspective and a customer perspective. Use Cases in that case, are IT stuff, whether you (I) like it or not. Or, you might have a very "mature" business environment where to perform business process modeling. Again, risks that Use Cases are the first IT requirements artifact in such environment is not little.
One is not necessarily better then the other. I recall the old promgrammer's adagio "if it works, don't fix it".
That said,  taking the real topic of priority on use cases, I agree EA should implement this feature on every element possible. It's one of the greatest values of EA to include project-related elements such as these (and requirements, and issues, and ...) beyond UML.

I’m not really sure how either of you are using “requirements” along with use cases.  We take the view that the Use Case Model is the primary requirements artifact.  Don’t get me wrong, we absolutely record non-behavioral requirements that make up what RUP calls the Supplementary Spec.  These, however, are not nearly as important as the use cases to our entire software lifecycle.  For us, the use cases drive the estimate, the iteration plans, the architecture (though not entirely), analysis, design, and testing.  

We use Use Cases in a similar way to XP’s User Stories when it comes to planning, which for us makes assigning a priority to use cases very important.  Bruce, you nailed the reason for having a priority on use cases in the last paragraph of your last post.

I can understand that for some customers this may have a low value, but for us (where we have over 100 licenses, and growing) it would be very helpful.

Suggestions and Requests / Re: Excluding senseless classifiers
« on: April 24, 2004, 12:02:10 am »
I'd be very carefull in using the wod "senseless", as this is a contextual matter. From a programming point of view, what you're asking is simply the possibility to inidcate for each classifier whether or not it should appear in the list you've mentioned.

General Board / Re: Class vs. business class
« on: August 15, 2005, 11:18:23 pm »

I do understand what they are used for. My problem is, how does EA figures out whether I'm using a business class or a "sofware" class?

For when introducing new stereotypes, one has either to choose, either to define the stereotype on both classes (which are pretty much, stereotypes by themselves alread -:)

By the way, I do use the boundary-control-entity stuff only on software analysis. Obviously, any system  description, including business systems, could be described that way. For a number of reasons, I prefer classical business modeling the depict businesses, with use cases in support of processes, leading to the MVC view in functional analysis. All this with a pretty much component based mind set.
For the latter delivers sound and universal organisation principles one can weave throughout the whole study from business to operations.

General Board / Class vs. business class
« on: August 15, 2005, 05:44:56 am »
I'm working in a document management context, so defining stereotypes for "paper document" and "electronic document" didn't seem such a bad idea.
For the business process, it does matter to see distinction.

However, in EA I could define these stereotypes based on class and on business class.

How does EA makes up the difference between a class and a business class? What's the "internal" criteria for that, or where does one set it?



General Board / Re: ref operator in sequence diagrams
« on: April 23, 2004, 08:42:16 am »
A UML 2.0 compliant tool should not need such a workaround.
Hello all,

I can create fragments in sequence diagrams, but is there a way to reference them in other diagrams. UML 2.0 has a ref operator, but EA does not have one. Is there an alternate way to do it?

thanks in advance


Uml Process / Re: Use Case and Batch processing
« on: August 25, 2005, 04:19:52 pm »
"Alternate postulate:
A use case is a set of interactions between actor and system that generate a (at least one) value outcome to the actor(s) (usually the primary actor but not necessarily).
A scenario is a statement of the (significant) possible outcomes of a use case."

--> the crucial element being "interaction", which is the dark side of batch processing   :)

"In other words, dont consider an equivalence between the batch job and the use case (design before analysis?)."
Yep, that's what's bothering me.  :-/

"An example may help.  Consider a batch input file for a bank clearing process.  An input transaction could "debit customer account" or "credit customer account" or even (if they are significant possibilities) "create customer account" or "close customer account".  Wham, 4 use cases and a primary actor ("input file transaction")."

--> but the 4 use cases would still make up for very poor scenario's (uness a lot of interaction would be going on)

Which technique is betterer? Depends on what the problem is.


--> tremenduous thanks for your idea's. a like that "file" actor look, for a change.


Uml Process / Use Case and Batch processing
« on: August 25, 2005, 03:18:11 pm »
A use case is a collection of scenario's.
A scenario is a time-sequenced set of interactions between actor and system.
From these interactions, we can deduct what the system has to do, so it's an entry point for system analysis.

Problem: in a batch environment, there's not a big deal of interaction between the system and it's surroundings. Once the user pushed a button, or time triggered the system's action, the interaction is pretty much finished.

Putting much more then "system processes ..." into the use case seems like pushing system analysis into requirements.

How do you people handle this? Any idea will be much appreciated.


Uml Process / Re: Abstract Classes and Interfaces
« on: January 30, 2005, 09:18:38 am »
Wasn't there also something about a class having attributes, while an interface has none?

Although, seen from the outside that would make the difference nil, given encapsulation -:)

Uml Process / Re: UP example
« on: January 30, 2005, 09:05:22 am »
A) On using/implementing UP:
- "Software Development for small teams - A RUP centric approach" ISBN 0-321-19950-2
- "Adopting the Rational Unified Process - Success with the RUP" ISBN 0-321-20294-5

Both books are small enough yet contain sufficient real life experience to be worth reading.

B1) Usage of EA as modeling tool:
Well, it would actually call to rewrite the tool mentor part, since you just replace Rose or XDE by EA.
However, given the added features of EA, depending your usage of EA, impact may go also to project management, requirements and change disciplines.

B2) Usage of EA to define processes:
I am actually adapting RUP for a governement agency using EA, based on the SPEM profile. This allows me to adapt RUP by a layer created in EA on top of it.

The greatest constraint so far is the restricted HTML generation from within EA.
I have requested a quote for specific HTML generation. (mainly, diagram updates should insert in existing pages and update hyperlinks from the model elements automatically)

Without adapted generation, all links have to be updated manually, which is just not sustainable!

I'll gladly share my work with you, it could be of mutual interest and a strong defender for EA - if the HTML story gets solved-

Uml Process / Re: Business Process Documentation with ARIS EPC
« on: April 23, 2004, 09:20:05 am »
In EPC's, sequence is rather essential. An event trigers a process, the outcome of which is an event thtat triggers another process ...  Use cases miss this typical  chaining. This apparent lack of structure amongst them is exactly what enables us to change from one organization type to another.
A way of viewing things is one where business processes (expressed as EPC) are supported by automated functions (expressed by UC).

However, an UML (use-case driven) approach is quite different to what you would do when working with EPC?

Cheers, Thomas

Uml Process / Re: Proposed Product Oriented Nature of This Forum
« on: December 28, 2002, 03:45:46 pm »

Well, I almost get emotional seeing people with pretty much the same youth: Clipper + Class(y), VO and then on to Java.
I found Class(y) a revelation, while VO had a steap learning curve and proved to be very unstable - both in technical and in market share terms. So much for the past ...

If you continue to go on like this, we want get into a flaming war with each other as, again, I do recognize - and confirm- your story about sticking to the process. Moreover: the people heading method support are the first onces to start shortcutting everything in the name of some self-imposed and thus divine deadline. But there's little one can do about this: I tend to wait for all those numerous cases when they have to rework because of things skipped, and try to improve at that point in a way that aligns with the foundation one would have got when working properly.

I'll have a closer look at the Six Sigma, since this is not a topic I'm familiar with (as opposed to Yourdon/DeMarco, Merise, OMT, RUP, UML, CMM, ITIL) and your enthusiasm makes me curious.

Thanks for your reply, and all of the best for you and your family for this and the coming years.

(Still need to contribute to the forum structure proposal. All this loving-kindness isn't very mindful in that regard!)


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