We are moving full-speed ahead with our adoption of BPVA to document our IT processes. A common situation in our models is that we have a common pattern of modeling approvals and their outcomes. We basically define a sub-process for each approval; that sub-process has several tasks and gateways, with the sub-process either ending normally or ending with a compensation trigger. Then, in the “calling” process there will be an intermediate compensation event to “handle” the trigger from the sub-process.
Two issues have come up:
There doesn’t seem to be a way to “link” or relate the events (i.e. between the throwing and the catching elements). This makes it hard for the modeler to develop / navigate his / her model, as well as the end user who may be trying to navigate through the web published model output, and sees no relationships or links between the two model elements. We have been trying to enforce a naming convention (so that the “throwing” trigger has the same name as the event which “catches” it)… but this just gives us something to scan for manually on the model, with again no way to link things. Can some support for an in-model hyperlink be supported, or linking by ID (or name) instead (easier than constructing a hyperlink)?
We are repeating these types of approval sub-processes across many of our models, each worked on by separate people. Is there a way to share these sub-processes between physically separate model files through some sort of repository or, like in 1), some sort of hyperlink to part of a model?
Currently we have about 40 people actively creating models… and these two issues are starting to make things very difficult for us.
Please advise… thanks
Thank you for your post. I have to say your first suggestion is nice. I already forwarded it to our development team. If we will support this, I will let you know. By the way, could you suggest, base on your user experience, what kind of model linkage is of useful to you, other than from end compensation event to intermediate compensation event? I guess the linkage between events with Link trigger is also meaningful, right?
Concerning the sharing of models, you may consider exporting diagrams as different projects, and distribute to different people for further editing. After they finish editing, you can import the exported projects back to the master project. To export a project, select File > Export > VP-UML Project from the main menu.
However, this may not be an ideal solution since it is difficult for the members to get the latest work done by other members from time to time, unless the whole team keep on exporting and importing projects, which is cumbersome. My suggestion is to use our Teamwork Server. Teamwork Server, as suggested by its name, allows your whole team to work on the same project. One can make changes and commit to the server, and another one can checkout the changes by a few mouse click. This ensure the design within the whole team is always in-sync. There are also other supporting functionalities for such as versioning and conflict resolution. For more details, please visit:
Hope this helps. I hope you could share your experience with us concerning your first suggestion. Thank you in advance!
This is a remark in addition to my previous post.
About Teamwork Server, I would also like to let you know that in Service Pack 1 we will support integrating with CVS and SVN. The support of CVS and SVN will be available in the following products:
Visual Paradigm for UML Standard Edition (or above)
Smart Development Environment Standard Edition (or above)
DB Visual ARCHITECT Java/PHP/.NET/Professional Edition
BP Visual ARCHITECT Analyst Edition
Agilian Standard Edition
For details, please read:
Which versioning system are you using? If you mind posting here, we can continue our conversation through private message.
About model linkage (goto model), we decided to support your request in Service Pack 2. With the new feature, you can add model reference to a model. We prepared a flash demo to show you how will this feature work. Please watch at:
Although the demo was made with use case diagram, this feature will be available to all kinds of diagrams and elements.
I hope that you will find it useful. Please feel free to comment on it, and let us know if this is suitable to you or not.
Thanks for the update on SP2 and the model linkage feature. This can probably cover most of our linkage and navigation needs. It’s not as “automatic” as something that can figure out references between “both sides” of an event, but I also think that doing that would be difficult to implement since it’s not always obvious how to relate the “catcher” and the “thrower” since one has to be defined in a project before the other, etc.
I like the ability to add references within the project by clicking on model elements. In larger projects where there are several sub-processes, many tabbed windows, etc. that may not be practical. The flash demo mentions that a dialog can be chosen to select via a navigator, model pane or class repository. Can I suggest that an additional option be provided: to add a reference by similar name (okay, maybe that’s not the best wording). What I’m thinking is that I want both “sides” of an event to be called the same (something our analysts are conforming to); if the “throwing” event is called “Rejected by Management”, then when adding references for the “catching” event with the same name maybe it could list model elements with similar names, allowing the user to select one or more. This would work for intermediate and end events, including links as well as cancels, compensations and errors.
Regardless, I’m very keen on at least what you’ve added so far: when will SP2 be available?
As for the Teamwork product, I will be looking at it. I’m not clear if this is an SCM (Software Configuration Management) tool for VP models, or something more than that. We normally use ClearCase to management our files (versioning, differencing, etc.) but I don’t know if we need to go with a full-blown SCM solution or not. Certainly being able to link between project models helps a great deal, and maybe taking that a step further it may be possible in the future to import a subset of a project into another. For example, we could define an “Approval” template project, one which describes a particular approval sub-process but is meant to be copied into a “calling” project’s process. I’m not sure if that is a viable idea, since any changes to the template wouldn’t be reflected in the “calling” project.
Anyhow, I appreciate the assistance and look forward to SP2!
Hello Jick and Cameron,
The problem with referencing “corporate” assets (like common templates) can be resolved in many ways. We used to work with Select Solution Architect, where the concept of"external item" existed. It was defined as reference to the model element defined in physically another repository; in another words, it was like a proxy / ambassador of one project in another one. It is possible to use a proxy in the model (i.e. reference to it, use as a base element) but it was not possible to change any of the features (name, etc.). For every external item there’s an option “refresh” that allows to “import” features from any newer version of the external element. The mechanism is very flexible yet simple. Maybe that is the direction VP can follow ?
It’s been quite a while since this was followed up. I’m currently using build 20070612 and see no sign of any ability to add in- and out-model references yet. Jick mentioned that “SP2” would cover this; unless I’m mistaken SP2 has already been released yet I don’t see anything matching the capabilities shown on the video.
Has this enhancement been dropped, or have I simply been upgrading incorrectly (I’ve been using the BPVA Update 2.0 tool to do in-place updates: should we uninstall then do complete reinstalls for SP2 features to be activated?).
Please advise… thanks
I am sorry. This is not yet ready. But we can promise that this will be supported. So sorry for the delay.
I can’t see to create messages between intermediate events in different pools that are message events, even when one is throwing and one is catching.
Did that ever get fixed?
Hi Mike Jones,
Thanks for your post. I’ve forwarded the issue to our engineers to investigate, and will keep you informed for any news on this issue.
Hi Mike Jones,
I would like to let you know that we fixed the problem of creating message flow between throwing and catching intermediate events. In the new version (BP-VA 3.0), you will find this problem fixed.
or evaluation, you can download the new version software from the following link:
If you purchased the license already but have questions on product upgrade, please leave a message to our support team at http://www.visual-paradigm.com/support/