Services for collaborative IT-systems

Success Stories

Custom Services and Solutions

Much in IT was standardised, problems and tasks in companies are still individual, though. Learn here about out customers and our procedures.

 Textual Documentation and Modelling Tool

A computing centre is providing IT services for banks in Austria. The centre’s IT landscape is maintained by a team of IT architects who are distributed over various locations. Documentation within the IT landscape has been done with diagrams, tables and text files, so far. The objective of this project, therefore, is to develop a tool which consistently documents the architecture and, at the same time, reduces data maintenance efforts through textual modelling. Its main task is to provide information and web-based visualization on the dependencies between individual architecture components as well as the connection of architecture components with the business functions. Thus the IT landscape will become transparent and general access to knowledge will be possible that has hitherto only been available segregated in parts of the company. The aspired tool will help master the increasing complexity of business-critical systems.

Within the first phase of tool development, extensive interviewing of all stakeholder groups was done to identify requirements for graphic mapping of architectures. From these interviews we learned that textual documentation and modelling was the most appropriate method for this team.

In close cooperation with the team we created the following languages and views in several iterations:

  • a textual modelling language for IT architectures
  • a textual modelling language for documentation of architectural decisions
  • configurable and web-based architecture visualizations in form of tree diagrams, graphs and matrices which deliver the main affecting information for  different stakeholders
  • visualizations that allow tracking of architectural decisions

With this tool it is now possible to develop a common understanding of IT architecture within a large company. The new documentation supports a deeper understanding of the IT landscape and its structure. Users value the easy and intuitive handling of the modelling tool. Moreover, textual modelling facilitates easier maintenance of the models and even permits automation of documentation via simple scripts.
The tool continues to undergo further development and we are making txture available as an Open Source tool at www.txture.org.

 Risk-based Testing Based on Software Metrics

A global manufacturer of telecommunication solutions wants to take more precise release decisions and to optimize the allocation of testing resources. For this reason, the company is introducing testing processes that can be controlled with the help of semi-automatically evaluated risks.

So far, risk evaluation had been done manually. This made it subjective, time consuming, prone to errors and not reproducible. A tool was needed which collects automatically measured software metrics and integrates them with manually measured values to evaluate risks. Specific test cases are derived from risks and prioritized for execution.

Risk evaluation and risk-based testing are now integrated into the existing development process and are built on existing artefacts (requirements, features, components, test cases). This facilitates the availability of complete project information.

Tasks

  • Development of a risk model tailored to the customer’s needs for risk evaluation
  • Extending the project management tool in-Step with a plug-in for risk-based testing to identify risks for individual features
  • Development of a plug-in for the metrics tool Sonar for automatic identification of source code metrics for the programming language Protel
  • Automation of risk evaluation
  • Integration of risk evaluation and testing within the development process

Technology and Tools
    Protel, in-Step, Sonar