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Business Rules Forum 2008 Wraps-up

Another International Business Rules Forum has run its course.  It was great to see the mainstream acceptance of leveraging Business Rule Engines (BRE) and Service Oriented Architectures (SOA) to facilitate both business and integration agility.  Paul Evans and I presented on that topic at last year’s Forum.  This year it was clear that vendors and implementers are leveraging the approach broadly.

I met many great people and learned a lot about how businesses are succeeding with Business Process Management (BPM) tools to automate processes.  This year there was a lot of focus on expanding to focus on data and rules.  This relates to the discussions we have regarding the semantic web.  We need to leverage semantics throughout our systems, starting with the data.  Without appropriate semantic underpinnings the promise of automated service discovery and self-describing environments cannot be attained.

I thoroughly enjoyed having an opportunity to hear Dave McComb describe the value of semantics as we pursue the use of business rule environments.  His deep knowledge of the semantic landscape and his energy while discussing it certainly inspires one to learn more about the topic.  Thanks to him I continue to evolve my thinking around the creation and structuring of data dictionaries and vocabularies when documenting and implementing business rules.

During the pre-conference tutorials I had the pleasure of attending Scott Ambler’s seminar on agile model driven development.  Scott is also an infectious, and blunt, speaker.  He is a committed crusader for the cause of leveraging agile techniques.  He makes many good points regarding the issues, and morality, surrounding some common software development practices.  If you haven’t read his books or attended a session with him, you are missing some interesting insights.  Although I don’t agree with everything he presents, particularly since he seems very black and white on development practices, he obviously knows his subject very well.

I also was glad that I attended the Open Management Group’s presentation on a model-driven approach to business.  John Hall stepped in to deliver the presentation and did a fine job.  What I found really useful was the concise manner in which the different business modeling standards were presented so that architects can appreciate where each one fits in the hierarchy of documenting requirements and designing solutions.

The session that Mike Strianese and I delivered, discussing web service security, was well received.  We had great feedback and follow-up from audience members.  It is clear that people are curious and concerned about the security of their systems and data.  It was nice to see people taking notes and really considering the vulnerabilities and mitigation techniques we were discussing.  If you are curious to view our slides from the presentation, they will be available on Blue Slate’s website at: http://www.blueslate.net/site/presentations?url=presentations in a week or so.

I look forward to applying some of the lessons learned that were presented as we continue this journey of leveraging BPM, rules and data to help our clients achieve their business goals.  If you are curious about the use of BPM, business rules repositories, rule engines and many ancillary technologies, you should consider visiting BRCommunity.com (http://www.brcommunity.com/) and attending next year’s International Business Rules Forum (http://businessrulesforum.com/).


One Response to “Business Rules Forum 2008 Wraps-up”

  1. EDM Summit - some closing thoughts » Smart (Enough) Systems, the blog Says:

    [...] Business Rules Forum 2008 Wraps-up (added 11/7) [...]

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