Author: grmatthews

New release

New version released.

Main changes

  • General stability improvements
  • Ability to create your own server-side AIM server for data processing of AIM business scenarios. Previously, you needed to use the supplied AIM Server and could built JScript server-side scripts to handle data processing for scenarios. This has now been expanded. We’ve been creating server-side scripts using Ruby, and persisting scenario data into MongoDB, but you should be able to use pretty much any language. This is going to be a fairly powerful improvement in terms of ability to write more sophisticated server side scripting, and have persistent data used by your scenarios.
  • Modified default behaviour of running Scenarios, so that they only run once by default, instead of on a loop. This is because with the new ability for model data persistence (above) it only makes sense for the scenario to run once.
  • Modified Scenario visualisation so that each model element in the scenario goes from blue -> green if it successfully executes, or red if there’s a failure. Also now displays the server-side error message in the model if it fails to make debugging easier.
  • New ‘Shader’ story element, that can be incorporated into an animated story.
  • Modification to shaders, so that there is a separate shader name and separate field to enter the model property to use for the shader. e.g. previously, a shader called ‘Domain’ would require that model elements needed to have a property exactly called ‘Domain’, which might have values of ‘Marketing’, ‘Sales’, ‘Delivery’, etc, but now the shader can have a different name, e.g. “Business Domains”, which is separate to the name of the property the shader uses, e.g. “Domain”.
  • Performance improvement to shading/resetting shading in the model. Now instant.
  • Increase anti-aliasing to sharpen how things look
  • Add ability for AIM to receive REST requests, so that it can be controlled by other applications or command lines that can generate REST requests.

Simulate business scenario information flows

We’ve just released a new version of AIM, with 2 important new features

  • Business scenario simulation
  • Export to Concept of Operations guide


Business scenario simulation

Business scenario simulation lets you process real data through your AIM model.

Once you’ve created your AIM model, you can attach scripts to receive, process, and output information.  JScript is the scripting language used to process data in JSON format through your model.

This is similar but different to BPM. Whereas BPM allows you to simulate the flow of control, AIM allows you to simulate the flow of information. The intent with AIM is to also simulate flows at a much higher level of abstraction than you might with BPM. Based on achieving agreement across the Enterprise on an information processing approach, you might then choose BPM to model further as you deep dive into 1 specific area of your AIM model.

This next level of detail, performing business scenario simulation on top of your existing macro design, gives you extra certainty in your design, in the form of defining the next level of detail on information processed.

For example, if everyone agrees that in your AIM model there’s a “Sales Dashboard” function that receives “Customer Summary” information, do we all agree what’s contained in that — is it just the Customer and receive Sales History, or does it also include the Financial History? Many projects have failed due to this basic information not being defined or understood up front.

With Macro data simulation you can model these high level structural information elements as they flow through your model, improving your information design, and de-risking your projects.


Concept of Operations Guide

There’s a new option under File > Export, to create a Concept of Operations guide in MS Word.

This is an export of all of your AIM model elements, with cross-references.

The idea is that while you’ll generate some insights about your business from directly using AIM, you’ll also want to export into document format sometimes.

This new export format is in additional to being able to export to Open Exchange (for use in most modern Architecture modelling tools), and Excel (so that you can map your IT portfolio against your AIM model).


Both of these are features are quite stable, but in beta, with more planned enhancements due to release in the next few weeks.