Category Archives: Standards

What Hoverboards Tell Us About Compatibility and the Need for Standards

By Steve Nunn, President and CEO, The Open Group

Every holiday season, there is always one gift everyone just has to have. This past year, that honor went to the hoverboard, a self-balancing scooter reminiscent of the skateboards many of us rode as kids, but with an electric motor and only two wheels—and even harder to master!

But, just as quickly as the hoverboards were flying off the shelves in December, sales for the scooters plummeted by mid-January when questions arose regarding the safety of the electrical components that make up the scooters’ drive train system. The toys became linked to a number of fires across the U.S. and, just between December and mid-February, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reported receiving complaints about more than 52 hoverboard-related fires in 24 states, resulting in not only $2M in property damage, but the destruction of two homes and an automobile. In addition, many of the major retailers that had been carrying the product-–including Amazon, Target and Wal-Mart, have currently discontinued sales of the product over the fire concerns.

The self-balancing scooter industry is clearly hurting these days. How can a product that was the darling of the moment—featured on many Instagram, Vine and YouTube accounts, that gained the attention of celebrities from Jamie Foxx to Justin Bieber—so quickly turn into a pariah?

In short—a lack of compatible standards.

Although many hoverboards actually carry the UL seal and claim to conform to safety standards set by UL (Underwriters Laboratories), an independent product testing company that sets safety standards, what has come to light since the product fires is that, while many of the individual components being used in self-balancing scooters are indeed safety compliant, they are not certified to be used together, making the entire product potentially unsafe. One radio announcer may have said it best when he likened the issue to having a car that was safety approved, and a surfboard that was safety approved, but when you put the surfboard on top of the car, it doesn’t mean the car will float.

The hoverboard controversy serves as a painful lesson for makers and manufacturers about component compatibility, and the need for standards that address not just individual product components but also the product as a whole. The sad thing is that could have been avoided had makers taken the time to test the components together, or create a standard that certifies the components can work together safely.

By contrast, The Open Group certification of products that conforms to the UNIX® standard has taken this “components working together” approach for more than 20 years. The Single UNIX Specification was created, in part, to take care of just this type of problem. In 1993, when the standard was created, there were so many UNIX APIs being used in various segments of the technology industry.  The three leading standards bodies that were creating UNIX standards decided to come together to design one standard that would be comprised of a superset of the most widely used UNIX APIs. Even then, there were a large number of APIs that made up the first version of the standard. In fact, the original standard, SPEC 1170, was named thus because it included a set of 1,170 compatible UNIX APIs.

This level of compatibility has always been a critical part of the UNIX standard. Since many vendors across the industry have created their own APIs and flavors of UNIX over the years, compatibility across those systems has been the key to interoperability for UNIX systems throughout the industry. Whenever a product is certified under the Single UNIX specification, it is guaranteed to both conform to the standard, and also be interoperable with any other certified products and any of the APIs contained under the umbrella of the single specification.

Today, there are more than 2,000 separate APIs contained in the UNIX standard—all compatible with each other. To reach this level of compatibility, The Open Group, which administers the Single UNIX Specification, performs extensive testing on any product submitted for certification under the UNIX standards. Any system that is UNIX certified has gone through more than 40,000 tests to assure their compatibility and conformance to the standard.

Among the more unique attributes of the Single UNIX Specification is that the standard also contains a three-pronged guarantee for interoperability. Not only does UNIX certification guarantee a certified product conforms to the standard, but every vendor that certifies a product to the standard also agrees that its product will continue to conform to the standard while certified.  The vendor also guarantees to fix any problems with the product’s conformance within a prescribed amount of time, should the product fall out of compliance.

This type of warranty and level of rigor within the standard further guarantee that all the components are compatible and will work together. The high level of testing around the standard has worked extremely well throughout the years. In the entire history of UNIX certification by The Open Group, there has only been one challenge to a product’s conformance to the standard—and it was a very obscure calculation that was taken very seriously, and quickly fixed by, the vendor. Because every vendor who participates in the program relies on a guarantee that every other vendor’s products all conform to the standard, the system takes care of itself.

Of course, non-compliance to the Single UNIX Specification is unlikely to lead to house fires or spontaneously combusting skateboards. But there are a great many technologies that businesses and consumers rely on everyday that work together because of the compatibility that UNIX offers. If there were bugs in those systems, our desktops, mobile phones, our Internet-enabled devices—even the Internet itself—might not work together. Without the guaranteed component compatibility offered by common standards like the Single UNIX Specification, one thing is for sure—we would all be a lot less productive.

UL has announced that they are in the process of developing a standard for hoverboards. The new certification, UL 2272, will focus on the safety of the combined electrical drive train system, battery and charger combination for self-balancing scooters. It is not yet known when the standard will be available.

By Steve Nunn, President and CEO, The Open Group

Steve Nunn is President and CEO of The Open Group – a global consortium that enables the achievement of business objectives through IT standards. He is also President of the Association of Enterprise Architects (AEA).

Steve joined The Open Group in 1993, spending the majority of his time as Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel.   He was also CEO of the AEA from 2010 until 2015.

Steve is a lawyer by training, has an L.L.B. (Hons) in Law with French and retains a current legal practicing certificate.  Having spent most of his life in the UK, Steve has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area since 2007. He enjoys spending time with his family, walking, playing golf, 80s music, and is a lifelong West Ham United fan.

 

 

 

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Filed under Association of Enterprise Architects, Single UNIX Specification, Standards, Steve Nunn, The Open Group, Uncategorized, UNIX

UNIX®: Allowing Engineers to Engineer

By Darrell May, Senior Principal Software Engineer, Oracle®

Oracle® Solaris innovation is due in part to the UNIX® standard,[1] the test suites,[2] and the certification.[3] By conforming to the standard, using the test suites[4] and driving to certification, Oracle® Solaris software engineers can rely on stable interfaces an assurance that any regressions will be found quickly given more than 50,000 test cases.[5] The old analogy was to build a good building in which you must have a strong foundation applies here. UNIX creates that foundation through stable and reliable interfaces where functional behaviors are predictable for both systems and userland development.

Developers (and users) benefit by not having to relearn command line interface semantics helps focus energy on innovation. UNIX is the “foundation” of Oracle® Solaris but also it helps Oracle® Solaris to be a foundation for other system or userland software engineering. Enterprise developers can be confident that the foundation won’t change out from under them from release to release.

An often-overlooked aspect of standards and the UNIX standard in particular is that they do not restrict the underlying implementation. This is important particularly because it allows innovation “under the hood”. As long as the semantics and behavior of a system call are preserved, you can implement any way you want. Operating systems developers can come up with better algorithms, improved performance, tie into hardware offload (see Oracle’s Software in Silicon innovation[6]) etc., to improve the efficiency of the call. Even better is that application developers get those benefits without having change the application source code to take advantage of it. As a system software developer it is a great feeling to deliver the benefit of improved features, security performance, scalability, stability, etc.,[7] while not having a negative impact on application developers using Oracle® Solaris.

By Darrell May, Senior Principle Software Engineer, OracleDarrell May is a Senior Principle Software Engineer for Oracle® Solaris with his current focus on serviceability, manageability and observability. He has a long history navigating the system stack from firmware to drivers to kernel to userspace identifying, designing and delivering solutions for the most difficult challenges. He is particularly passionate about enabling engineers to do engineering, facilitating customers’ business and driving innovation in the products that he works on.

UNIX® is a registered trademark of The Open Group.  Oracle® and Oracle® Solaris are registered trademarks of Oracle Corporation.

[1] http://www.opengroup.org/standards/unix

[2] http://www.opengroup.org/testing/testsuites/unix.html

[3] http://www.opengroup.org/subjectareas/platform/unix

[4] http://www.opengroup.org/testing/testsuites/vsx4over.htm

[5] http://www.opengroup.org/testing/testsuites/vsc5over.htm

[6] http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/softwareinsilicon/index.html

[7] https://www.oracle.com/solaris/solaris11/index.html

 

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Inaugural User Group Meeting Draws Out New Ways of Seeing TOGAF®

By The Open Group

The Open Group hosted the first TOGAF® User Group meeting on January 25, 2016 in San Francisco. With over 50,000 certified users in more than 120 countries, the intent of the TOGAF User Group was to better serve and reach the entire TOGAF user community, allowing them to network with other users, interact with TOGAF subject matter experts, brainstorm solutions for challenging situations and build an active user community.

According to Terry Blevins, Fellow of The Open Group and consultant for Enterprise Wise, LLC, who facilitated the meeting, the goal for the inaugural event was to provide a venue were users could easily Share, get Enlightened and Express (SEE TOGAF) their needs as users. Blevins says those in attendance were engaged throughout the day and that users “found a useful balance between the three dimensions” of SEEing. In addition, the overall response to the event was positive, he says, with many attendees expressing a desire to hold additional events moving forward.

The User Group format consisted primarily of a full day of managed breakout sessions, each focused on trends that are affecting the use of Enterprise Architecture within organizations today. Facilitators led discussions with users on a variety of critical topics including:

  • TOGAF for Digital Transformation
  • TOGAF Business Scenarios
  • Security within TOGAF
  • The Role of People within TOGAF
  • TOGAF for eGovernment
  • TOGAF Hot Topics

During the session, TOGAF users provided significant viewpoints regarding potential enhancements that could be made to the standard throughout the day. Chief among them was the desire to have more concrete, practical use cases for TOGAF—particularly within specific industries. With many industries currently undergoing some radical shifts as they move toward greater digitalization, users are looking for increased guidance around how to use Architecture frameworks within industry verticals. Blevins states there was some expectation of this going into the User Meeting, but to have that validation directly from users was very important.

“The exciting thing was that we really thought that was going to happen—folks are asking for this and ready to use TOGAF across vertical industries,” he says.

Not only are users looking for more vertical industry examples, but they also expressed a need for additional horizontal use cases that can be used cross-functionally within organizations. Users would like to be able to use TOGAF, an Open Group standard, as a framework for making change within different departments and service parts of organizations such as HR, Finance or Operations. Current work in The Open Group IT4IT™ Forum is actually a perfect example of how the framework can be put to use across service functions, with the IT department leading the way in the form of the IT4IT Reference Architecture.

Guidance around how to do business or digital transformation was also mentioned as a potential enhancement. Blevins believes that with all the requests for templates, case studies and practical examples, there is an opportunity for developing a substantial series of “How to” articles and white papers that can be used in conjunction with TOGAF to provide users greater direction for specific use cases and examples.

“A lot of people really want to use TOGAF,” says Blevins. “They just need some help in applying it.”

Users also expressed a need for assistance in how to get buy-in for TOGAF and architecture from C-level executives within their organizations. This has long been a problem within the Architecture community and architects continue to struggle with how to better sell and market both themselves and what they can do.

Blevins says one suggestion that was made during the User Meeting was that Enterprise Architects stop trying to sell Architecture and instead focus on selling the outcomes or solutions they provide. It was suggested that perhaps architects spend too much time trying to sell their methods and frameworks and the “how” behind their work rather than just talking about solving the problem and how architecture will improve the business. Ultimately, the focus should be on that, not on how to apply Enterprise Architecture, he says.

Users in attendance were also struggling with how to integrate their Architecture efforts with Agile development trends and the need to bring increased innovation and speed to their projects. The need to develop more service- and customer-oriented delivery models to help transform businesses was also mentioned, as well as the need to include more guidance around Risk Management and Security within TOGAF.

The User Group meeting was very productive and provided excellent input on the standard. All feedback from the User Group is being delivered to The Open Group Architecture Forum for consideration in helping to enhance the standard and to provide feedback for TOGAF and trainers, as well to continue developing content that supports the standard and best practices for its use.

Please join us in London on April 27, 2016 for our upcoming TOGAF User Group meeting. The entire agenda for The Open Group London 2016 can be found here.

 

 

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Filed under Digital Transformation, EA, Enterprise Architecture, IT4IT, Standards, The Open Group, The Open Group London 2016, TOGAF®, Uncategorized

The UNIX® Evolution: An Innovative History

By The Open Group

The history of computing would not be complete without Ken Thompson[1] and the late Dennis Ritchie[2] who were visionaries during the early days of computing. Both men couldn’t have anticipated the impact of their (and others) contribution of the UNIX system (initially dubbed as UNICS[3]) to the world starting in 1969. Ken Thompson, Dennis Ritchie, and others created a collaborative programing environment [4] that would promote, what now is commonly called “open development”.  In 1975, that vision became far more collaborative with the release of version 6 of the Bell Labs’ UNIX operating system, which was the first version made widely available outside of Bell Labs, and ultimately became the University of California Berkeley BSD UNIX[5]. The UNIX operating system is “now considered one of the most inspiring and influential pieces of software ever written.” [6]

What started out as a communal programing environment or even an early word processor[7], the UNIX system turned out to be a more durable technology than Thomson and Ritchie could have imagined. It’s not only a durable operating system, but it is adaptable, reliable, flexible, portable and scalable.  Ultimately, the UNIX OS would end up being supported across multiple systems, architectures, platform vendors, etc. and also spawn a number of look-alike compatibles. Lastly, UNIX technology would be the engine that drove innovation even beyond programming and data processing to markets and technologies beyond the realm of computer science.

The academic and commercial take-up of UNIX systems would help germinate the growth of many existing and new technologies. An example of that innovation would be in bioinformatics that was critical to advances in genetic engineering including the human genome project. Investigations of the physical world, whether it’s high energy physics, modeling proteins, designing Callaway’s Big Bertha Club, or simulating car crashes to improve passenger safety was part of the overall innovation enablement of UNIX. Moreover, UNIX systems contributed to more ethereal innovation being a driving force of the growth of ARPANET (to become the World Wide Web) and being the first World Wide Web server[8]. Examples of where science and business have been touched by UNIX innovation include assisting high-energy physics laboratories create standards to improve collaboration via HEPiX[9], NASA’s Solutions for Enterprise-Wide Procurement (SEWP) to maximize value while reducing cost[10], and the modern UNIX standard, which has helped vendors, developers and customers maximize their investment[11]. Even touching the world of entertainment in which computer generation visual effects have become ubiquitous[12]. There are few technologies and industries in which UNIX systems did not have an impact.

The UNIX legacy of Thompson and Ritchie is far from over with numerous UNIX systems being critical to both personal computing and enterprise computing. Apple, a truly iconic company, embraces UNIX technology as the core of the Mac OS X operating system, which is certified against the Single UNIX specification[13]. Major vendors such as HPE, IBM, Inspur, and Oracle offer UNIX products, which are also certified against the Single UNIX Specification; today’s UNIX systems provide solutions to most industries including driving current innovations around cloud computing, mobility, virtualization), etc. Most customers have come to depend on the enterprise grade, highly reliable, scalable, and secure UNIX systems that drive their daily business continuity, and the innovative solutions that help them scale their businesses to the next level.

Companies like Audi AG use certified UNIX systems as a robust, flexible, and high performance platform for managing its business operations using IBM AIX running a private cloud infrastructure[14]. Another example of innovation is Best Western, the hotel chain, which uses certified UNIX systems from HPE to deliver processing-intensive services providing their customers with real-time, 24X7 responsiveness[15]. Lastly, Toshiba has used certified UNIX systems from Oracle to reduce operational and maintenance costs by 50% creating a private cloud using virtualization technologies[16].

From the humble roots of Thompson’s and Ritchie’s original UNIX system to the current branded versions of the commercial UNIX systems, this OS continues to be at the core of the modern computing world driving innovation.

By The Open Group

Highlights from the Evolution of UNIX®
(Click the infographic to download the PDF)

For more information, please visit http://www.opengroup.org/unix

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ken_Thompson

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dennis_Ritchie

[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Unix

[4] Dennis M. Ritchie, The Evolution of the Unix Time-Sharing System. 1979.

[5] https://www.albion.com/security/intro-2.html

[6] http://spectrum.ieee.org/computing/software/the-strange-birth-and-long-life-of-unix/

[7] http://www.catb.org/esr/writings/taoup/html/ch02s01.html

[8] http://webfoundation.org/about/vision/history-of-the -web/

[9] http://cds.cern.ch/record/1732257/files/vol34-issue2-p018-e.pdf

[10] The NASA SEWP (Solutions for Enterprise-Wide Procurement) began as a means for a NASA scientist to easily obtain his computer in 1992 and has grown to be one of the premier vehicles for the entre US Government to purchase Information Technology.  In the formative years of the SEWP program UNIX, and in particular the UNIX brand as trademarked and certified by The Open Group, was a keystone to ensuring a standardized set of solutions that met the needs of Government scientists and engineers.” – Joanne Woytek, NASA SEWP Program Manager, January 14, 2016

[11] http://www.unix.org/market_information/buscase.html

[12] http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/Special-Effects-ILM-SGI-on-Top-3033788.php

[13] https://blog.opengroup.org/2015/10/02/mac-os-x-el-capitan-achieves-unix-certification/

[14] http://ibmdatamanagement.co/tag/audi

[15] http://h41361.www4.hp.com/best_western_success.pdf

[16] http://www.oracle.com/us/corporate/customers/customersearch/toshiba-7-sparc-ss-2283278.html

 

 

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Filed under Enterprise Transformation, Single UNIX Specification, Standards, The Open Group, Uncategorized, UNIX

It’s All About the O(pen) – Open Standards and Open Source

By Dave Lounsbury, CTO, The Open Group

Recently, The Open Group received a query about whether a piece of software which was restricted to use with Open Source systems could be used on Apple’s OS X. The person had seen OS X on the Register of Certified UNIX®  Products and asked “so this means it’s open source, right?”

This confusion between open standards and open source is something you see frequently. While Apple’s OS X does conform to the UNIX Standard, it is sold as part of Apple’s product line – it is definitely not open source.

What’s the difference? An Open Standard is a specification for the interface, behavior or quality of something (an operating system in the case of UNIX®). There are various but similar definitions of what openness is, but most agree that open standards are developed through consensus processes that feature:

  • Openness
  • Balance of interest
  • Due process
  • An appeals process

Most also agree that open standards should be available at reasonable and non-discriminatory prices.

Open Source, on the other hand, refers to a software implementation that is made available using one of a variety of licenses and “with its source code made available with a license in which the copyright holder provides the rights to study, change, and distribute the software to anyone and for any purpose[1].” While many open source projects are developed through collaboration, some are not. Although typical open source initiatives encourage wide participation[2], the governance of what changes are or are not accepted is up to each individual project, particularly in smaller projects where the decision may be under control of a single individual.

So, what is the relation between these two similar sounding but fundamentally different approaches to openness? One of my mentors in the standards world told me that the best standards are like tires and highways. While there are limits on weight, size, etc., within those limits, people can build whatever kind of vehicle they best suits their needs.

Open standards and open source should have that kind of a complementary relationship. Open standards provide a stable foundation for innovation and increase buyer confidence in knowing what’s in a product, and open source allows people to get started quickly and economically, and to collaboratively create new capabilities. One or more open source implementations can also drive the widespread adoption of a standard, thus strengthening it – look at Apache and HTTP for a good example of this.

To bring this idea of alignment of open standards and open source back to the original query about UNIX and open source: are there examples of such alignment? The answer is yes: Inspur K-UX 3.0 is based on a Linux distribution, but is also certified as conformant to the UNIX standard – the same as Apple’s OS X, AIX, Solaris , HP-UX and others. There is plenty of room on the UNIX® highway – it would be great to have more open source vendors riding along.

  1. Wikipedia, “Open-source software”
  2. Open Source Initiative, “The Open Source Definition (Annotated)”

By Dave Lounsbury, CTO, The Open GroupDavid is Chief Technical Officer for The Open Group. As CTO, he ensures that the people and IT resources at The Open Group are effectively used to implement the organization’s strategy and mission, including The Open Group’s proven processes for collaboration and certification both within the organization and in support of third-party consortia.

David’s previous executive assignments at The Open Group and the Open Software Foundation (OSF) include VP Advanced Research and Innovation which fostered open systems technology through collaborative funding and development, including LDAP, ActiveX Core Technology, DCE 1.2, CDE-Next, and Complex Text Layout.

David holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and is holder of three U.S. patents.

Connect with us via Twitter –  The Open Group @theopengroup and Dave @technodad

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Filed under open source, Single UNIX Specification, Standards, The Open Group, Uncategorized, UNIX

The Open Group San Francisco 2016 Day Two Highlights

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Communications, The Open Group

The Open Group CEO & President Steve Nunn kicked off the second day of The Open Group San Francisco event, “Enabling Boundaryless Information Flow™”, with a warm greeting and quick update on activities in The Open Group Forums.

Of note were updates regarding progress on harmonizing ArchiMate® and TOGAF® within the ArchiMate and Architecture Forums, as well as joint work between the Architecture and Open Platform 3.0™ Forum on digitalization and customer experience. In addition, the FACE™ Forum will be launching a certification program later this year, the Healthcare Forum recently published a whitepaper on healthcare focus and the OTTF Standard is currently being translated into Chinese. And in the Security Forum, work is being done around Risk Management, as well as building a more robust approach to security planning into TOGAF. Steve also presented long-time Open Group member Kirk Hansen with an award for his work in the Architecture Forum.

Tuesday’s morning plenary session focused on IT4IT™ and managing the business of IT.

The first session of the morning was given jointly by Ryan Schmierer, Business & Enterprise Architect, and Kathleen Wilson, Enterprise Architect for Data Center & Cloud Services, from Microsoft presenting on “The Case for Change: How Lessons Learned by Microsoft Align with IT4IT.”

According to Wilson, today DevOps are driving the cadence of the Cloud. With the largest technology companies now deploying new capabilities anywhere from a few times a week to thousands of times a day, IT must focus more on delivering business value and brokering services. This new model will require a high level of automation and heavy emphasis on systems monitoring within IT to deliver services and manage failures. With the drastic changes in how IT works, Wilson believes the cloud will make the role of traditional IT pros obsolete within the next five years.

To avoid IT becoming irrelevant, Schmierer says IT will need to shift its role to focus more on being a service broker, business enabler and steward of enterprise data while ensuring security throughout the enterprise. However, this will require change. IT organizations will need to reexamine definitions of success to focus more on business outcomes rather than IT metrics, experimentation and learning and use a more outside-in orientation to solve problems. By fully integrating IT management systems, companies will be able to better manage the IT value stream and create end-to-end systems that can provide a true services model and provide better decision-making in organizations.

Microsoft’s presentation was followed by a brief update on progress within the IT4IT Forum by Chris Davis, IT4IT Forum Director and Professor of Information Systems, University of South Florida. Two years ago, a group of folks from various organizations first met to discuss the possibility of an IT4IT standards. In the short time since, not only has the group launched the IT4IT Forum within The Open Group, but it has recently published its first Reference Architecture, which already has more than 5,000 downloads worldwide and is being used by more than 3,000 individuals from approximately 800 organizations. The Forum has also published a management guide and hopes to launch its first IT4IT people certification in April of this year.

Following the morning coffee break, Rabobank Business Architect Toine Jenniskens presented a case study on “How IT4IT Helps Rabobank Navigate the DevOps Journey.” Like Microsoft, Rabobank is looking to automate and monitor as many IT processes as possible and create a modular IT model so the department can focus more on business priorities. To do this, the bank is taking a value-stream based approach based on the IT4IT Value Chain and Reference Architecture to manage its IT processes and breakdown silos across the organization. Thus far, the bank has begun to consolidate tools across functions, increase IT automation and fully automate incident management. Although their transformation is still underway, Rabobank has been able to automate delivery, increase time to market, lower costs and create greater continuity in services and delivery as a result.

The final morning session was a panel discussion on IT4IT in Practice led by Interarbor Solutions IT Analyst Dana Gardner. The vendor panel featured IT4IT Forum Chair Chris Davis; Lars Rossen, Distinguished Technologist, HP Enterprise; David Wright, Chief Strategy Officer, ServiceNow; and Ryan Schmierer, who presented earlier in the plenary.

The panel discussed a number of critical issues around how IT management is changing and how IT4IT can ease that transition IT including how and why IT4IT was developed by and for IT managers, the possibility of using an IT framework to model services across other parts of the business and how to get traction for and start using IT4IT within IT departments. According to Wright, industry traction for a more holistic view of IT seems to be coming first from financial services and pharmaceutical sectors. Schmierer says that he believes there will be early adoption for IT4IT among companies that have large legacy IT systems, typical technology early adopters and those under the most pressure for cost performance. One way to know early on whether IT4IT is working within organizations, Rossen says, is that they’ll see a difference in areas for multi-services. Davis added that although the changes IT4IT will bring will likely be difficult to measure, but it will be sensed within organizations. However, Wright suggests organizations put together ways to measure success prior to beginning projects so departments can benchmark against them after projects are completed.

Tuesday’s afternoon tracks followed three different threads—a continuation of the morning’s discussions around IT4IT; EA topics around business transformation and value; and Open Platform topics including mobile computing and data analytics. In the IT4IT track, attendees were treated to a number of deep dives into the IT4IT Value Chain, providing a peek under the covers of each stream within the chain. The EA track featured practical examples of EA transformation in practice including an energy industry case study, a look at how SOA is maturing and advice on getting practical value from architectures.

In the Open Platform 3.0 Mobile Computing track, Russ Gibfried, Enterprise Architect for Hewlett Packard Enterprise, gave an interesting talk on the use of mobile platforms in the San Diego Police Department (SDPD) entitled “Probation Officers Online and On the Streets in San Diego.” The SDPD has implemented a system using smartphones and smart watches as technology hubs for the county’s probation officers. Using a mobile app, officers are now able to managing their caseloads and contact notes in the field, as well as use location services and search capabilities to keep tabs on clients.

Afterward, Modi Ronen an IT/Business Enterprise Architect from Salesforce, spoke on enterprise mobile strategies for cloud architectures. We now live in a primarily mobile world. However, most mobile apps are still abandoned, forgotten or deleted. As such, those designing for mobile must begin to prepare for Mobile 3.0 user experiences—usability, value, adoptability and desirability, as well as personalization—that better marry form and function for users, particularly as the Internet of Things and wearables become more ubiquitous.

In the late afternoon tracks, Don Brancato, Chief Enterprise Architect for HPE First, and Myles Suer, Chief Platform Evangelist, Informatica, hosted a talk on “Removing Science from Big Data Programs.” Brancato and Suer posit that science and looking for nebulous information is holding up the progress of Big Data to the detriment of gaining business value. What companies are finding is that Big Data is not a cure-all for the problems associated with traditional Business Intelligence. Rather than getting stuck with scientists digging around through masses of data, Brancato and Suer advocate for automated Big Data services that will allow for more easily repeatable analyses that deliver the actionable information businesses really need and get users involved in the process as early as possible.

Also in the late afternoon, Michael Fulton, Principal Architect, CC&C Solutions held a discussion providing details on the upcoming IT4IT Certification and Training Program followed by another panel discussion on IT4IT, again moderated by Dana Gardner.

The afternoon panelists included Fulton; Philippe Geneste, Partner at Accenture; Sue Desiderio, IT Enablement Process Leader, for PWC; Dwight David, Enterprise Architect for HPE; and Rob Akershoek, Solution Architect for Shell. To wrap up the day, the panel discussed the state of the IT4IT Reference Architecture today, where it needs to continue to evolve and the value of automation for IT organizations. The panel strongly encouraged attendees to try out the standard so they can see what’s working well and where tweaks may need to be made.

The day ended with a dinner and wine tasting event at San Francisco’s famous Presidio, a park and former military base, with beautiful views overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge.

On Wednesday and Thursday, work sessions and member meetings were held.

A special ‘thank you’ goes to our sponsors and exhibitors: Association of Enterprise Architects (AEA), BiZZdesign,  Good e-Learning, HPE, Orbus Software, Signavio, SNA Technologies, Van Haren Publishing.

Other content, photos and highlights can be found via #ogSFO on Twitter.  Select videos are on The Open Group YouTube channel. For full agenda and speakers, please visit The Open Group San Francisco 2016.

By Loren K. Baynes

Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, joined The Open Group in 2013 and spearheads corporate marketing initiatives, primarily the website, blog, media relations and social media. Loren has over 20 years experience in brand marketing and public relations and, prior to The Open Group, was with The Walt Disney Company for over 10 years. Loren holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University. She is based in the US.

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Filed under ArchiMate®, Boundaryless Information Flow™, Business Transformation, EA, Enterprise Architecture, enterprise architecture, Enterprise Transformation, Information Technology, Interoperability, IT4IT, President and CEO, Standards, Steve Nunn, The Open Group, The Open Group San Francisco 2016, The Open Group San Franscisco 2016, TOGAF®, Uncategorized

The Open Group San Francisco 2016 Day One Highlights

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Communications, The Open Group

On Monday, January 25, The Open Group kicked off its first event of 2016, focused on Enabling Boundaryless Information Flow™, at the Marriott Union Square in the city by the bay, San Francisco, California.

President and CEO Steve Nunn gave a warm welcome to over 250 attendees from 18 countries, including Botswana, China and The Netherlands. He introduced the morning’s plenary, which centered on Digital Business and the Customer Experience. This year also marks a major milestone for The Open Group, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2016.

The Open Group Director of Interoperability Dr. Chris Harding kicked off the morning’s event speaking on “Doing Digital Business.”

Digital technology is transforming business today. As such, how Enterprise Architects can architect for and deliver better customer experience is a more critical factor for businesses today than ever before. For thousands of years, most business transactions happened face-to-face with human interaction at the heart of them. The Internet has changed that, largely taking humans out of the equation in favor of “intelligent” programs that provide customer service. As Enterprise Architects, the challenge now is to create corporate systems and personas that mimic human interaction to provide better service levels. To achieve that, Harding says, currently companies are looking at a number of improved models including providing microservices, Cloud architectures and data lakes.

To better enable the transformation toward digital customer experiences, The Open Group Open Platform 3.0™ Forum is currently working on an interoperability standard to support a variety of services that run on digital platforms. In addition, the Digital Business and Customer Experience Work Group—a joint work group of Open Platform 3.0 and the Architecture Forums—is currently working on customer-based architectures, as well as a whitepaper geared toward enabling better customer experiences for digital business.

In the second session of the morning, Mark Skilton of PA Consulting addressed the issue of “The Battle for Owning the Digital Spaces”. Skilton says that in this era of unprecedented digital information, we need to better understand all of that information in order to create business opportunities—however, much of that information is contained in the “gray” spaces in between interactions. Accessing that kind of data provides opportunities for businesses to get a better handle on how to provide digital experiences that will draw customers. It also requires “ecosystem” thinking where what is happening on both the micro and macro levels should be considered.

As such, companies must reconsider what it means to be an enterprise, platform or even a service. This requires a new way of looking at architectures that combines both physical and virtual environments to take advantage of those “gray” spaces in people’s lives. By interconnecting or “flattening” out people’s experiences, such as their work, living, commercial or social spaces, they will be allowed to take their digital experiences with them throughout their lives. To enable these things moving forward, architects will need to change their mindsets to think differently and consider experience more rather than just architectures. Behavior, interactivity, psychology, usability—the human factors—of advanced customer experience will need to be considered in the architecture development process more to create more connected spaces to meet people’s needs.

Trevor Cheung, Vice President Strategy & Architecture Practice for Huawei Global Services, spoke next on “Architecting for Customer Experience.” Cheung introduced the concept of the ROADS Experience, a principle for designing customer-driven architectures. According to Cheung, ROADS (Real-time, On-demand, All-online, DIY and Social) is critical for companies that want to become digital service providers. As organizations digitalize, they should think more holistically about customer experiences—including both internal (employees) and external audiences (customers, partners, etc.)—moving from an inside-out IT perspective to one that also considers outside-in constituencies.

For example, to provide omni-channel experiences, business architectures must focus on the values of stakeholders across the ecosystem—from buyers and their interests, to partners and suppliers or operations. By applying the ROADS principle, each stakeholder, or persona, can be considered along the way to develop an architecture blue print that covers all channels and experiences, mapping the needs back to the technologies needed to provide specific capabilities. Currently two whitepapers are being developed in the Digital Business and Customer Experience Work Group that explore these issues, including a new reference model for customer architectures.

In the last morning session Jeff Matthews, Director of Venture Strategy and Research, Space Frontier Foundation, presented “The Journey to Mars is Powered by Data: Enabling Boundaryless Information Flow™ within NASA.” Currently, NASA’s programs, particularly its endeavors to send people to Mars, are being enabled by complex Enterprise Architectures that govern each of the agency’s projects.

According to Matthews, nothing goes through NASA’s planning without touching Enterprise Architecture. Although the agency has a relatively mature architecture, they are continually working to breakdown silos within the agency to make their architectures more boundaryless.

Ideally, NASA believes, removing boundaries will give them better access to the data they need, allowing the agency to evolve to a more modular architecture. In addition, they are looking at a new decision-making operating model that will help them grapple with the need to buy technologies and setting up architectures now for programs that are being planned for 10-30 years in the future. To help them do this, Matthews encouraged audience members and vendors to reach out to him to talk about architectural strategies.

In addition to the event proceedings, The Open Group also hosted the inaugural meeting of the TOGAF® User Group on Monday. Aimed at bringing together TOGAF users and stakeholders in order to share information, best practices and learning, the day-long meeting featured topics relative to how to better use TOGAF in practicality. Attendees participated in a number of breakout sessions regarding the standard, intended to provide opportunities to share experiences and enlighten others on how to best use TOGAF as well as provide suggestions as to how the standard can be improved upon in the future.

Allen Brown, current interim CEO of the Association of Enterprise Architects (AEA), and former CEO of The Open Group, also introduced the AEA Open Badges Program for Professional Development. Much like badge programs for the Boy or Girl Scouts, the Open Badge program lets people demonstrate their professional achievements via digital badges that provide credentials for skills or achievements learned. Moving forward, the AEA will be providing digital badges, each of which will include embedded information showing the information learned to earn the badge. Attendees can earn badges for attending this conference. For more information, email OpenBadges@GlobalAEA.org.

Monday’s afternoon tracks were split into two tracks centered on Open Platform 3.0™ and Risk, Dependability and Trusted Technology. The Open Platform 3.0 track continued in the same vein as the morning’s sessions looking at how Enterprise Architectures must adapt to the changes due to digitalization and growing customer expectations. Accenture Enterprise Architect Syed Husain gave an insightful presentation on enabling contextual architectures and increased personalization using artificial intelligence. As both consumers and technology become increasingly sophisticated, demands for individualized preferences tailored to individuals are growing. Companies that want to keep up will need to take these demands into account as they evolve their infrastructures. In the Security track, sessions centered on privacy governance, best practices for adopting the Open FAIR Risk Management standard and dealing with cyber security risks as well as how to navigate the matrix of data classification to maximize data protection practices.

Concluding the day was an evening reception where event and TOGAF User Group attendees mixed, mingled and networked. The reception featured The Open Group Partner Pavilion, as well as short presentations from The Open Group Architecture, IT4IT™ and Open Platform 3.0 Forums.

@theopengroup #ogSFO

By Loren K. BaynesLoren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, joined The Open Group in 2013 and spearheads corporate marketing initiatives, primarily the website, blog, media relations and social media. Loren has over 20 years experience in brand marketing and public relations and, prior to The Open Group, was with The Walt Disney Company for over 10 years. Loren holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University. She is based in the US.

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