The Open Group Conference in Barcelona – Day One Recap

By The Open Group Conference Team

Monday was jam-packed with excitement at The Open Group Conference in Barcelona. Since not everyone could make the trip, we’ve put together a recap of the day’s most popular sessions. Stay tuned for more recaps, which are coming soon!


How to Gain Big Insight from Big Data

In his talk titled, “How Companies Extract Insight and Foresight from Big Data,” Scott Radeztsky, CTO of Deloitte Analytics Innovation Center, discussed how companies can tackle Big Data. Scott recommended three specific steps that will help organizations make sense of Big Data:

  1. Get Buy-in First: Without the right tools, it is near impossible to make sense of Big Data. Research the technologies that will help you understand, break down and analyze Big Data. After determining which technology/technologies you would like to invest in, present a strong case to all decisions makers on why it is necessary, focusing on the activities that it will enable and the output that it will produce. Be sure to convey the direct business benefits to ensure that all stakeholders understand how this will ultimately help the business, both in the short- and long-term.
  1. Be Lean: Borrowing from Eric Ries’ Lean Startup Methodology, Scott encouraged attendees to think “low-fi before thinking high-fi.” Often times, planning and project management can be time consuming without producing results. By breaking up larger tasks and projects into smaller pieces, IT professionals can focus on a smaller number of features and really concentrate on the task at hand, rather than more administrative duties, which are necessary but don’t produce output.
  1. Create visuals: A spreadsheet full of numbers does not help anyone grasp data, let alone Big Data. Use visuals to present data to other users and stakeholders, to help them understand what the data means sooner rather than later. This will mean that dashboards and abstraction layers should be designed with user experience (UX) first, before diving into the user interface (UI). Helping all users within an organization understand Big Data more efficiently should be the primary focus of your efforts, and this is done through visuals and superior UX.

To view Scott’s presentation, please watch the session here: https://new.livestream.com/opengroup/Radeztsky-BCN12

Talking Big Data in the Boardroom

Peter Haviland, chief architect and head of business architecture within Ernst & Young’s Advisory Services, along with his colleague Mick Adams, emphasized that data impacts decision. Big Data is in prime position to help organizations improve the execution of strategy across business functions. We are moving toward a Big Data platform, and according to Haviland and Adams, the conversation for architects starts with technology.

The data explosion is happening and executives recognize the need to invest in and integrate technology and analytic capabilities into their architecture. According to Haviland and Adams, business capabilities need to support an information-centric reference model in order to take advantage of Big Data. During the session, Haviland and Adams presented a framework for architects to implement effective analytics using a wide range of common transformation tools, that when used in a coordinated fashion, unlocks the promise of enterprise analytics.

To view Peter and Mick’s presentation, please watch the session here: https://new.livestream.com/opengroup/Mick-Peter-BC12

Big Data Needs Big Architecture – An Architectural Approach to Business Information Management

In their talk titled, “Big Data Needs Big Architecture – An Architectural Approach to Business Information Management,” Ron Tolido and Manuel Sevilla of Capgemini asked, “Do we really need big frameworks to support big data?” They both concluded that they didn’t think so. Capgemini commissioned the Economist Intelligence Unit to survey over 6,000 business leaders worldwide about the use of Big Data on their organizations. Their research showed that a surprising 85 percent of respondents say the issue with Big Data is not the volume, but the ability to analyze and act on the data in real time.

Volume, variety and velocity is what Ron and Manuel think most people focus on in regards to Big Data. However, it’s not about volume; it’s really about value. By velocity, they mean that what happened one minute ago in more relevant than what happened one year ago. Time and the turnover of information is directly linked with value and relevancy.

Manual explained that there is a lot of data that isn’t being exploited. Big Data is about using all that data to yield a return on investment.

Ron and Manuel presented a “Big Data Process Model” with four steps:

  1. Acquisition (collecting the data)
  2. Marshaling (organizing the data)
  3. Analytics (finding insight and predictive modeling)
  4. Action (using insights to change business outcomes)

In sum, Manuel reiterated that volume is essentially a non-issue. IT has been seen often as a constraint when it comes to business; that is no longer. Big data means big business.

To view Ron and Manuel’s presentation, please watch the session here: https://new.livestream.com/opengroup/Tolido-BC12

Delivering Enterprise Architecture with TOGAF® and ArchiMate®

On Monday, BiZZdesign’s CEO Henry Franken opened his session titled, “Delivering Enterprise Architecture with TOGAF and ArchiMate” by speaking about what exactly Enterprise Architecture is, and why it’s needed. He explains it is both a model and a product and believes it falls into the implementation category in a business and bridges that gap between “as is” and what is “to be.”

Henry also covered TOGAF’s popular Architecture Development Method (ADM), which is broken down into four steps (but is a continuous process):

  1. Getting the organization committed and involved
  2. Getting the architecture right
  3. Making the architecture work
  4. Keeping the process running

Henry discussed The Open Group’s visual modeling language for Enterprise Architecture, ArchiMate. He explained that the language of ArchiMate is designed to talk about Enterprise Architecture domains (information architecture, process architecture, product architecture, application architecture and technical architecture), but more importantly to maintain the interrelationships between them. It allows for one language for all Enterprise Architecture change. The latest version also adds a motivation extension to facilitate what a stakeholder wants and what is changed within Enterprise Architecture. This way, changes can be easily traced back to stakeholder and business goals.

In closing, Henry explains the links between TOGAF and ArchiMate, in three layers – the business layer, application layer and technology layer. Together they can help a business accomplish its goals in the final migration and integration layer. He says TOGAF and ArchiMate are the perfect basis for a tool-supported enterprise architecture practice.

Henry provided examples of each layer and step, which can be viewed here, along with the whole presentation: https://new.livestream.com/opengroup/Franken-BC12

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