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2 TRAK Papers to be Presented at the INCOSE Annual Systems Engineering Conference (ASEC) 2010

by Nic Plum on Friday 17 September, 2010 - 16:50 GMT

Posted in Architecture FrameworkTRAKNews

Tags: conferenceincosetrak


The INCOSE UK Chapter will be holding a 3 day conference running from the 8th to the 10th November 2010 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Heythrop Park Resort, Enstone, Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire. The overall theme is Systems Engineering: Adding Value in Challenging Times and as they say:

We live in challenging times - budgets are shrinking, and customers are increasingly looking for value-for-money solutions, with the added complication of a perceived shortage of systems engineers across many industry sectors.

These are the challenges that Systems Engineering needs to address:

  • driving down costs by effectively managing uncertainty on projects
  • developing novel solutions that address the actual stakeholder problems
  • promoting a systems approach as the cornerstone of good engineering practice

There will 2 TRAK-related papers presented:

Day 1: 11:10 - 11:50 Human Factors - On the Right TRAK?

Nic Plum - Eclectica Systems Ltd. and Chris Lowe - Liv Systems Ltd.

This presentation is about applying a user-centred design (UCD) approach to unusual things: the design of a UK rail industry architectural framework called TRAK and its use for Human Factors work in a challenging Systems Engineering environment.

This architectural framework, if it is to be usable, has to address a number of challenges. The framework needs to unite or integrate the different stakeholder viewpoints on the same underlying system or problem. The framework also needs to be usable by these different stakeholders. In applying UCD, the emphasis has been placed on consistency, simplicity and ease of use, and as a system it is essential that not only does it embed HF principles in its design but also that it should support the practical needs of Systems Engineering disciplines. For this reason, we will also describe how TRAK supports the needs of practitioners with reference to studies conducted within the Rail Industry.

Day 1 13:30 - 15:00 TRAK - An Architecture Framework for Rail

Colin Wood - London Underground Ltd.,  Capital Programmes Directorate,  Nic Plum - Eclectica Systems Ltd., Andy Pryor - SEA Ltd.

Systems Engineering extols, amongst other things, the virtues of having greater control and awareness of interfaces, sometimes called Interface Management. Systems Architecting is the activity of choice for delivering managed interfaces. Systems architecting of complex systems within and across different contractual boundaries requires a common architectural description language – aka an architecture framework.

While other sectors have been applying architecture frameworks for years, the rail sector has largely ignored them, perhaps thinking that they are over-complicated, another bureaucratic layer and just too difficult to roll-out successfully. It may have a point…

... but TRAK is different. It is easy for small, medium and large enterprises alike to get to grips with. It was developed by rail professionals for rail professionals. It is system-centric and has just enough to get the job done. Its open source means anyone can download it freely from the internet and start producing productive systems architecture diagrams straightaway. What is more, they are re-usable and shareable with partners.

This lively 60 minute joint presentation will explain TRAK and explore three case studies:

  • An implementation of TRAK using Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect;
  • Applying TRAK to interface management for the London Underground Sub-Surface Railway Upgrade;
  • Applying TRAK to developing a functional architecture model of the UK railway

Further information can be found at on the INCOSE UK Chapter’s website.

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