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Messages - Steve_Straley

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General Board / Re: Use case enough ??
« on: December 16, 2002, 09:14:35 pm »

You really ought to take a look at Six Sigma and some of the Tollgate Processes.   These are EXACTLY some of the steps outlined.   This is why I LOVE a blend of Six Sigma, RUP, and UML for a complete process that encompasses all of the "stakeholders" possible.   You can GOOGLE search on Six Sigma and see what I mean.


Hi ac, Steve, Fred... all,

One way of viewing a software project (excluding the project management perspective) is to see it from four different points of view:

1. The user's view:
2. The behaviour view:
3. The structural view:
4. The technical architecture view:

<et cetera>

Jaime Gonzalez

General Board / Re: Use case enough ??
« on: December 16, 2002, 08:42:20 am »

From a RUP document point of view, IMO, the USE CASE flow (basic, alternative, subs), the pre and post conditions, special conditions, external points are important from various aspects including base-lining customer expectations, test scripts, et cetera.   However, UML, IMO, goes further from a technical perspective in data states, sequencing events, and structures.   This means, to me at least, that both are necessary from a front-loaded perspective (RUP getting stakeholder support, audience acknowledgement and acceptance, and QA) and from a back-loaded perspective (UML getting down to the nitty and gritty of the actual system).

I'm doing a rather finance project here at GE at the moment and there are a lot of "alternative flows" and all need to be documented to drive to a functional requirement doc.

Just my .02.


General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 10, 2002, 06:40:11 am »
lol... you got that right my friend... that's why I play Monopoly on line or Bridge when I feel like thinking <LOL>...

Yeah, ditto on the two-way communicate thing.

Gotta admit, though, that some no-brainer activities/discussions and blowing off some steam once in a while feels pretty good.  Can't do concrete things all of the time, eh?

General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 10, 2002, 06:28:30 am »
Whoa back Jason,

I didn't take anything personally, but that's the trouble with 2 dimensional communication.

Information is great and I certainly don't believe in censoring.  I don't know what EVER gave you that idea! I just see this thread similar to those threads on CompuServe and "The Source" back in the 80's.   One of the nice things about CA is that I learned it's about making money and we all individually have to spend alot of time keeping focus on that.  Maybe that's why I stopped writing books and all.

As far as the health on EA, well... personally speaking we're trying to do something about it which I'll outline next week.  I do believe that the discussion on a formal UP process... one that generates LOTS of White Papers and the like... do ALOT more towards ensuring the health of EA than this thread.   For example, companies have bought into the RUP concept (even though they don't follow it OR they give lip service to it only to cut corners when it comes ot RUP implementations, but that's a different issue).   If we could put lots of things like that together, then companies will see those types of things they have become accustomed to as opposed to open discussions.   For example, the tutorial I started to put together... maybe I'm stupid or niave but I felt that that type of effort would go a greater distance to ensuring EA's success then anything else I could do at the time.   Of course, we moved on to testing other things with EAToolkIT and soon, with EA-ReqPro.

The point is I know emotions and passions and believes are strong and hell, I want to see that continue.   But there are concrete things we can do far more effectively than discussions (IMO).


General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 10, 2002, 05:35:04 am »

I never said I didn't understand his points, I STRONGLY feel they are strawman issues.   There are inept managers all over the place and no matter what you do or do not, you will loose out on some extra sales.   Frankly, it's none of our business... it's Sparx business if THEY feel it is an issue.  A web site or a HELP ABOUT page or jumping in here does NOTHING to increase sales... a huge sales force taking those "inept" managers out to lunch does MORE to the sale.   BUT, if that is not Sparx business model, then that's THEIR business.

Come on people, let's stick to our business plans and our products and out models, and not try to run or make someone else's.


General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 09, 2002, 09:08:17 pm »

Again, why should Geoff and crew enter the fray when we're doing a good job supporting their product, their service, and their company.   How many times have you never heard from the head of a company or a government when the message that would be conveyed be done by others.   I know I wouldn't.


General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 09, 2002, 09:10:20 am »
By the way....

FWIW, I just did a google search on "UML Tool" and EA came up as the 17th item (on the second page) and ahead of Object By Design tool, Metamill, and almost just before VisualUML.

I then typed in "UML Modeling Tool" and what to my wonder did I see off to the right in "SPONSORED LINKS" was Sparx and Enterprise Architect.

I then typed in "UML Tool with support and full features" and Sparx was 4th and RATIONAL didn't show up until the 8th page and I stopped looking for Togethersoft.   Not sure if that means that neither Rose or Togethersoft offer "full features" and/or "support" or both... <LOL>.

Of course when I searched for "I want a free BMW", Sparx and Enterprise Architect didn't show up at all in the result set.  Drats!



General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 09, 2002, 03:26:34 am »

LOL... I'm sorry my friend, I wasn't clear... I was asking for an open mind because of the language we're using.   Very Clipper-esque <LOL>.  Nothing more.

Now who's turn is it for that beer???





Not quite sure what I said that gave the impression I pre-judged EA-ReqPro except perhaps its omission from my list of suggestions for requirements management tools.

If so, I didn't mean to create that impression.  I was listing stuff that I have had some experience with and look forward to evaluating your product on my next project.

But for the time being, were's that beer...


General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 08, 2002, 08:48:15 pm »

I understand the driving issues you have expressed but I don't think a detailed "About Us" web page would resolve anything.  CA has an investor's page and a detailed history page and I don't know anyone on here with pleasant experiences with that company (just siting one for an example AND as a former RVP) nor do I know anyone RUSHING to buy any of their products.   And I'm talking about a 6 Billion Dollar company with over 17K employees!

Sparxr product, support, and dedication throughout the years expressed by others on here speaks LOUDER than any self-made marketing blurb on a web page.  That's just my opinion and I have often been wrong!

Maybe their way of doing business doesn't require the "corporate" press report, high google presence, et cetera.  As a potential customer I would hope that the resounding support and open communication on this board addresses that far better than any slick glossy could ever do!

<<I'm a little disappointed that no-one from Sparx has responded to this thread.>>

Maybe they feel we, their users, have done an adequate job and there is no need for them to enter the fray.

<<However, so far I am very impressed with EA and may well end up purchasing despite the lack of info about the company.>>

Again, the product and the support (and okay, the price) says it all to me.

<<But I do wonder how many sales they are missing out on simply because they don't provide some basic background info about the company on their website.>>

You raise an interesting point but that's for them, I feel, to consider.  Hell, if I could be a company of just 1 and had a product with their support and if I could make a nice living with just one product and just being a lone developer, I would in a heart beat!   Samson found out that size doesn't matter.

I think that once you buy the product you'll find the level of support FROM ALL OF US to be an oasis of pleasure from the corporate environment of software overpricing, customer non-support, and less-than-adequate software tools for development.

That's just what I've experienced and I've only felt that way about one other product in over 20 years.



General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 03, 2002, 07:40:26 am »

I couldn't bold/italic anything if my rear-end depended on it.

Hope y'all can still take my 2 cents somewhat seriously.

I'll take more than those .2 cents... well said and I totally agree!



General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 03, 2002, 07:39:31 am »

I knew that your name was familiar and now I remember I read one of your Clipper books way, way back when I did a spot of Clipper programing (even taught a Clipper course once).

Thanks, I'm glad you remembered... I try to forget sometimes when I look back <ROFL>.

Your comments about the pre-sales stuff is VERY VERY True.  As RVP-level of Pre-Post Sales of Field Services at CA for the entire SE region here, I got to see that first hand.   The CA model of buying companies and then up-selling to their installed base is well known.  Their high price points is well known.   The sales staff hammering on corporate buyers and "decision makers" is well known.   Their less-than-adequate software, not moving development on purchased software companies, and their multi-tiered level of non-support is also well known.   Rational follows these points is also well known.   Frankly, I'm glad to see Geoff and crew around... it reminds me of the good-old days like Nantucket... where trying to make money by being the best is the only important issue.

Oh, Phil... don't pre-judge EA-ReqPro... we're using VO for this first release before moving over to C# and .NET <lol>.



General Board / Re: Information about Sparx Systems
« on: December 03, 2002, 05:40:25 am »

I'll let Geoff decide if he wants to answer this but with over 20+ years in software and as a former RVP for CA and one of the original team members of Clipper, a few brief thought.

Sparx is MORE important that Rational, not less.   Their attitude to a) support and b) upgrading their produce to be current on a regular basis is FAR more than what I can say for Rational.   Now, if you mean by "important" that their have a HUGE MARKETING program, INFLATED licensing agreements, and CORPORATE SALES reps all over the place, then okay... they have that.   But then again, so did RBase, QuatroPro, Quark, Frameworks, Aston Tate, yadda yadda, and the list could go on.   I've found that MEDIOCRE/CRAPPY products can have the best MARKETING arm to overcome the shortcomings of their product.   That, too me, doesn't make for good software development, modeling, designing, et cetera.  And without the best tools, our software using those tools can not be "the best".   The trickly down theory at work I suppose.

I also hope that you are actually comparing ROSE to EA and not the "suite" of Rose to EA.   The first is comparable; the last is not.    I'm sure you can do a purely _technical_ comparison of the two and draw that conclusion as well amd EA will beat Rose.   When PRICE, SUPPORT, FREE UPGRADES FOR A YEAR, and (this last point is CRITICAL) Sparx bend-over-backward approach to listen to the users and offer feature enhancements based on OUR REQUESTS, then there is no compariosn.   Rose and the "corporate mentality" behind Rational falls woefully short of the mark.    But if you're looking for slick sales people, if your management team wants to be wined-and-dined at free lunches, if they like glossy handouts, and if they think that paying MORE MUST mean it is better, then Rose comes ahead.

As far as capital, number of people, number of sold licences, et cetera... I understand the RATIONAL behind the question but frankly, it's none of anyone's business IMO (no offense being given here... just an opinion).   That same thing was done against Nantucket and we just kept sticking to 3 major principles to our product "Bigger, Better, and Faster".   At the time, Ashton Tate was huge and we weren't and while in the beginning we weren't "approved software", over time we came to be because of those three principles... and not because of "the numbers".   Also, consider the dozens of support people at Rose who can't answer a question; the number of programmers that can't update products (like RequistePro), and the number of sold licences that just sit on the shelf because of awkwardness of use, inability to get the job done, and support that is anything but... then you'll see I hope that the requested numbers don't mean very much.  

Finally, unless Sparx is a publicly traded company, those numbers are NOT "public" in nature. Unfortantely some corporate minds think they mean something to the quality of the product or the longevity of the company.   Well, those numbers mean nothing.  Here's just ONE example.  I know a TON of people who gave ASK/Ingres high marks for those types of numbers and now know they didn't mean very much the day after they were sold to CA... and CA has all of those types of numbers you want.   In short, it's the Software, Support, and ROI that should mean MORE to the decision making process than anything else.   All the capital, number of people, number of sold licenses, clients and et cetera don't mean a hill of beans if the SOFTWARE doesn't do the job.   That's the issue, IMO.

Just my .02 worth...


General Board / Re: All requirements in EA - doable? Advisable?
« on: December 03, 2002, 05:48:19 am »

However, I plan to find some time to check this board and am interested to hear more responses to Jaime's suggestion that we develop a method via this forum.

I would love to see an EUP thing developed and would be more than happy to incorporate it into what we are trying to do.   I'm trying to add the Tollgate stuff for Six Sigma (do a google search for that) as well to blend business plans, project plans, and project measuring guidelines into our current efforts.

Have fun on holiday... we need a long one here for sure!



General Board / Re: All requirements in EA - doable? Advisable?
« on: December 03, 2002, 05:44:25 am »


I am very interested in EA-ReqPro and seeing the beta. I also want to keep all my requirements in the tool. Unfortunately I cannot find the World-eIT site to download some more details.

Thanks for the message.   I'm still trying to get some additional fact sheets up on our web site in the coming days.   I've posted the first 100 pages or so of the beta use manual with screen shots and all.   I've got to finish up on the USE CASE integration with EA this evening and then make the install base before I go to formal BETA.   There is an ALPHA/BETA agreement also available off our web site.   Just go up there and look around and if you have any questions, just fire me off an email or post it here and I'll get back with you ASAP.



General Board / Re: All requirements in EA - doable? Advisable?
« on: November 29, 2002, 01:51:46 pm »

You can imagine that I have been watching and reading this thread with some interest.

When we first started using EA, we, too, created an ENTIRE set of Requirement Objects in separate packages that eventually paralleled the packages that held the actual USE CASE objects.   From there we started to build the rest of the UML diagrams that would eventually be the base of our product line (at that time).

Because of the DOT COM stuff, a few of us had to go get consulting jobs to keep going and many of us actually went to work for large corporations that had, from our perspective, some archaine <spelling> rules.   For example, for me at GE, I discovered a strong ANTI-EA bias not because of EA's power or pricing but because they felt that the RUP process that they developed paralleling their Six Sigma process should be handled OUTSIDE of the modeling tool.   Maybe it was a case where they didn't like the idea of being financially screwed by Rational and maybe this allowed Visio-Word-Project associations to be allowed in certain branches of the company.  Whatever the reason, we faced this <ahem> point of view repeatedly.

Having said this, that's where a couple of us at World-eIT decide to buck up EA and stick up the competition by for the first set, building EA-ReqPro.  So, having said all of that (and I will certainly say more on it and others later on), let's tell you want we do with regards to EA and Requirements.

EA-ReqPro allows you to add Functional Requirements as you would do any other type of requirement (as is, use case, stakeholder, deployment, vision, critical step, et cetera).   These requirements can be arranged in a template to then generate the "UP-based document".

However, Functional Requirements and USE CASE items can also be DIRECTLY associated (in the case of USE CASE, the picture can be separately associated) to a requirement "entry" in EA-ReqPro.  You then design the document with all the requirements you've accumulated and generate the appropriate document.  You can also do a massive IMPORT of requirements and/or use cases from EA into EAReqPro.

The TO / FROM associations as well as sub-requirements can also be maintained in EA-ReqPro so you can trace through the process.   But you can tie AS IS requirements to Functional Requirements and then to USE CARE requirments and you can create VIEWS of your collection.   Those who have used either Requiste Pro or Cailber will find these options similar if not down-right familiar <evil grin>.

I'm finishing up Chapter 3 of the user manual that talks about the various types of requirements, folder, packages, and other features.   I'll be working on the TO DO, Discussions, Views, and Revision Histories over the weekend.   Anyone can go to our web site and download the EA-ReqPro user manual.  I also suggest if you are interested in the progress of the project to check there often: we'll upload new chapters as we finish them (un-edited for your pleasure <lol>).

Once we release we'll be anxious to follow the tradition of Sparx and give y'all new features as we go along.   Of course, this now begs the question on "release".

Well... we'll make a formal annoucement in a day or so but we are going into FULL BETA on December 2nd, 2002.   Our goal is to release on January 1, 2003.   We'll know more about that later point once we start getting feedback.

If you have ANY questions on EA-ReqPro, just hollar and I'll see if I can answer them.

Thanks again,


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