Enterprise architecture expresses the structure of an enterprise’s activities, its processes, capabilities, systems, information resources and technology dependencies. The objective is to be able to understand the relationships between these elements; analyze and continuously adjust them for alignment with the business strategy, improved effectiveness and quality of service.
figure from "Capability Cases: A Solution Envisioning Approach"
by Irene Polikoff, Robert F. Coyne and Ralph Hodgson,
ISBN: 0-321-20576-6, Addison-Wesley, 2005
When the elements of the enterprise architecture are expressed in an ontology, they can be easily navigated to understand relationships between them and implications of business and technological changes. Powerful reasoning capabilities offered by OWL and Semantic Web Rules can assess the impact of technology decisions and assist with the policy enforcement.
Using Semantic Web standards, enterprise architectures developed in different tools can be easily merged and reasoned over. Powerful IT Management capabilities for assessing alignment and exploring component sourcing and technology decisions, become possible. Service Oriented Architectures are enabled with real-time intelligent discovery and composition services.
Semantic Enterprise Architectures are active models that can be connected to a variety of data sources and be queried to answer questions like:
- What business areas will be impacted if this application goes down?
- What software systems and business activities will be effected if we upgrade to the next release of technology?
- What are all the projects currently under way that are addressing support for this business function?
TopQuadrant’s Enterprise Architecture solution combines:
- Ontology models of the leading Enterprise Architecture frameworks including Federal Enterprise Architecture (FEA), Department of Defense Architecture Framework (DoDAF) and The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF)
- TopBraid Composer – a modeling tool for developing custom Enterprise Architecture ontologies and connecting to the enterprise data sources
- TopBraid Ensemble – a collaborative environment for managing Enterprise Vocabularies
- Enterprise Architecture portal – application deployed on the TopBraid Platform to provide customized access to the Enterprise Architecture information, support analysis, accelerate decisions and generate alerts
- Planning, modeling and implementation services