Usi4Biz Framework Presentation at TAMODIA'09


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Presentation of the Usi4Biz framework at Tamodia’09, focusing on the production rules used to perform model transformations and impact analyses. Rules for model transformations are useful to save time when creating models and links between them. Rules for impact analysis are very important to verify what is going to happen if a specific change is made in any node of the model network.

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Usi4Biz Framework Presentation at TAMODIA'09

  1. 1. A Rule-Based Approach for Model Management in a User Interface - Business Alignment Framework Kênia Sousa, Hildeberto Mendonça, Jean Vanderdonckt Université catholique de Louvain (UCL) Louvain School of Management (LSM) Belgian Laboratory of Computer-Human Interaction (BCHI)
  2. 2. Motivations • In the competitive market, organizations are now, more than ever, managing changes to improve BPs. • The industry has realized that it is no longer only IT infra- structure that is pivotal to improve services for customers. • A study has shown that alignment with UI contributed to 100 to 200% user productivity gains (Henry, 2007). • Changes on business processes that directly impact UIs are rarely considered in the literature. • Widen viewpoint beyond IT-Business perspective.
  3. 3. IT-Business Alignment • The CEO Framework represents an enterprise architecture that aligns the organization’s strategy with its business processes, IT software and hardware and people. • No vision for UIs • Changes impacting on UIs are not carefully handled • How to address large systems with hundreds of UIs? (Vasconcelos, 2001)
  4. 4. Model-Driven UID • Vision for user interfaces, but not for user interaction: Alignment of BP with UIs with direct links between activities in processes to elements on the UIs. • Absence of generic structure: Decomposition of a business process in layers done for specific scenarios. • Scarcity in tool support for traceability: Frameworks with principles, but not tools to support decision making. • Not enough concern with people: Focus on how the artifacts are linked, handled and maintained, rather than on the people who use the enterprise systems.
  5. 5. Goals • Enable fast adaptation to new business challenges considering business context and user perspective • Stronger relationship between business processes and UIs • Predict impact analysis when changes are made on business processes or on UIs • Support decision makers with analytical information (impacted end-users, units, etc.)
  6. 6. Contribution • The need to focus on user interaction has led us to innovate on aligning IT with BPs through UIs by originally calling the term UI -Business Alignm ent. • UI-Business Alignment is a framework that brings forward the user perspective in the business context with a methodology and tool. • Mapping UI models is supported by UsiXML, a UI definition language that represents models in a structured form. • Appropriate for large organizations with hundreds of users, thousands UIs and heterogeneous systems.
  7. 7. Methodology
  8. 8. Why Task Models? • Recognized by its precision when representing user interaction with systems; • It has a hierarchical structure that provides an overview of the user interaction; • Its hierarchical structure has the same purpose of the business process structure: from high level to detailed description of the work to be done; • The symmetry of both structures represents a clear bridge between business processes and UIs.
  9. 9. Impact Analysis • Rules support impact analysis to verify when a node is changed, what can be done in the other models to maintain alignment. • Transformation rules: perform transformations between the models considered in the methodology; • Change management rules: make an impact analysis of changes made on any of the models; • Verification rules: check the coherence of the association of task models with UI components. • Defined 53 transformation and change management rules; explored for different operations, totalizing in 212 rules for the forward approach.
  10. 10. Transformation Rules Business Model Task Model Sequence Flow (no condition, default) Enabling Sequence Flow (conditional)/ with Data Object Enabling + info. passing Rule Intermediate Event + Link Interm. Event Suspend/resume Data-Based Exclusive gateway Deterministic choice Inclusive decision + Exclusive merge Non-Deterministic choice Cancel Intermediate Event Disabling Ad-Hoc marker in sub-process Independence Parallel gateway Concurrency Parallel gateway + Data Object Concurrency + info passing Sub – Process Task Task Task
  11. 11. Transformation Rules rule “AddBPMNSequenceFlow” when s: SequenceFlow(id == “sF-LogIn-ViewRequest”) then insert(new Enabling(s.getId(),s.getSourceRef(),s.getTargetRef())); end
  12. 12. Change Management Rules rule “ModifyTMAtomicUITaskIntoSubTasks” when an atomic task (‘Change of applicant data’) is modified into a task composed of sub-tasks then add SE for sub-tasks (‘Change product’, ‘Change tax’) in the SF of the task (‘Financial data’) end
  13. 13. Change Management Rules • Backward Tracking rule “AddUIScreen” when a new screen (‘Request Second Opinion’) is created with SE(‘Send-Work-Contract’, ‘Send- Bank-Statement’, ‘Send-Salary-Statement’) then create a task for the new screen and sub-tasks for each SE within this screen end
  14. 14. Verification Rules Task Model User Interface • After associating tasks with screen components, check if the association is coherent. • « If the node is a screen group, then the node below it is screen group or screen »; • « If the node is a screen and is the second to last level, then the node below it is screen element ».
  15. 15. Tool Support
  16. 16. Advantages • User-Centered: stakeholders visualize how the process is performed through UIs. • Traceable: chain of links assist in identifying the impact of changes to maintain the alignment between BP and UIs. • Human-Centered: cross-organizational engagement (making business analysts and users aware of changes). • Optimization: users, a source of process optimization: the way they do activities impacts process performance. • Adaptation: • Mapping elements at different levels of granularity influences the result of impact analysis. • Changes in the structure of the models, rules can be updated, without maintenance of the tool.
  17. 17. Thank you! BCHI Lab UI extensible Markup Language Program Alban
  18. 18. Publications • Sousa, K., Mendonça, H., Vanderdonckt, J. A Model-Driven Approach to Align Business Processes with User Interfaces. International Journal of Universal Computer Science, Special issue on Human-Computer Interaction, Nov. 2008. • Sousa, K., Mendonça, H., Vanderdonckt, J. User Interface Development Lifecycle for Business-Driven Enterprise Applications. 7th International Conference on Computer-Aided Design of User Interfaces CADUI’08, 2008. • Sousa, K., Mendonça, H., Vanderdonckt, J. Addressing the Impact of Business Process Changes on Software User Interfaces. Proc. of 3rd IEEE/IFIP International Workshop on Business-Driven IT Management (BDIM 2008), 2008, pp. 11-20. • Sousa, K., Mendonça, H., Vanderdonckt, J., Rogier, E., Vandermeulen, J. User Interface Derivation from Business Processes: A Model-Driven Approach for Organizational Engineering. Proc. of SAC’2008, ACM Press, NY, 2008, pp. 553-560.