Well, Impact 2010 is over. It's been four and a half days of terrific content, catching up with other IBMers, customers and business partners. All of the Telco related sessions finished Wednesday so the last day and a half today, I have been concentrating on product updates to Business Process Management products. I went to a WebSphere Process Server V7 update yesterday and a WebShere Services Registry and Repository this morning. By far, the best session of the last two days was the final session which covered how to get started and be successful on your first BPM project. The presenter had lots of recommendations which made a lot of sense. Once the presentation is posted to the Impact collaboration site, I will summarise it (I didn't think to do it as the session ran as I did for the telco sessions - sorry!)
The WPS update had the BPM product Architect Eric Herness (BPM Chief Architect) along with Amy Dickson (WPS Product Manager) and Kevin Barker (WBI Architect) went through the many improvements that were introduced with WPS V7 as well as the improvements in WebSphere Integration Developer.
As I write this (on my phone) I am sitting downstairs in the Venitian waiting for the time to tick over before I head to the airport. Unfortunately, McCarran Airport (LAS) doesn't have an American Airlines lounge*, so I might as well wait here where I have free wifi and food as be at the airport. From there, I go to Los Angelies (LAX) and then finally home (after 15 or so hours in the air) to Melbourne.
Next week, I will be heading to the TeleManagement World in Nice, France so if I have wifi connections during the sessions, I will post from the sessions there as well. I hope you'll join me there or failing that, at least read about it here.
* The observant and well travelled among you will know that LAS does actually provide free wifi, but sitting at the airport is not as nice as sitting in the comfy chairs at the hotel....
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Andrew_Larmour 0300000243 Tags:  andrew_larmour impact impact2010 las_vegas #ibmimpact 4,673 Views
In Costa Rica, the government owned telco - ICE is being forced to open up it's market to competitors because of the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) that Costa Rica has joined. This represented a huge change for ICE who were a Power and Communications provider, without a competitor in their market, they didn't have any competitive forces to push them to modernise their systems and processes. For instance, fulfilment of basic services took weeks as a result.
GBM, an IBM business partner and IBM Software group proposed to ICE that they base their new OSS/BSS architecture on the TeleManagement Forum's Frameworx (eTOM, TAM, SID, TNA) - for which they used the WebSphere Telecom Content Pack and IBM Dynamic Process Edition to ensure ICE would have the standards compliance and dynamic BPM capabilities. By using WTCP and DPE, ICE reduced the effort required to build and deploy their new processes by an estimated 20-50%. A fundamental principle of Dynamic BPM is the Business Services layer which sits on top of the BPM layer which in turn sits on the SOA layer. A Business Service is abstracted up from the physical process. For instance, a business service might be 'Check Technical Availability' which would apply regardless of the service you are talking about - mobile, POTS or xDSL. These business services are defined within the Telecom Content Pack which enables system integrators like GBM to accelerate the architecture work on projects like this one for ICE.
GBM made use of IBM's Rapid Delivery Environment (RDE) - where they sent a number of their architects to the IBM Telecom Solution Lab in Austin, Texas for six weeks to conduct a proof of concept and to learn how to apply WTCP to a real customer situation such as that faced by ICE. The RDE allowed GBM to work with the IBM experts to build the first few scenarios so that GBM could continue the work locally in Costa Rica without a lot of assistance from IBM. The other benefit of using the RDE is to get access to the eTOM level 4,5 and 6 assets - the connections to the physical systems that the RDE has previously developed. For instance, the connection to Oracle Infranet Billing engine which can then be reused by other customers who also engage with the RDE.
GBM and ICE have not yet been able to measure that acceleration that WTCP and DPE provided, but anecdotal evidence suggests that it was significant. In preparation for CAFTA, ICE have already launched a 3G network and are preparing to launch pre-paid services in preparation to compete with several new operators that will enter the market this year.
Andrew_Larmour 0300000243 Tags:  #ibmimpact impact2010 globe philippines telco telecom 4,353 Views
At this morning's keynote session with Beth Smith (IBM) and Shanker Ramamurthy (IBM) one of my customers - Globe Telecom from the Philippines was mentioned - unfortunately they could not be here to see if for themselves, so I thought I would post the photos and short video
Some official videos have been uploaded to YouTube - taken from the real (read good quality) cameras at the event. I have extracted out the relevant Telco section and added subtitles to clarify what Beth and Shankar are actually saying.
AT&T are part way through a major SOA/BPM project which if you know a little about their history* must be an enormous task. They are introducing modelling tools and reverse modelling their existing systems as well as using a tool from iRise to prototype the user interfaces and reduce the risk of not hitting the business requirements.
They have deployed Rational Requisite Pro to capture requirements without the need to get users away from their beloved MS Word. In the last five months, their requirements have gone from 15,000 requirements registered in January to over 30,000 now. Certainly illustrates the traction that they are achieving with their business people. Users access Req Pro via Citrix sessions and the tools are available to thousands of business users.
AT&T are also exposing WebSphere Business Modeler and iRise to a smaller set of subject matter expert users - building a Centre of Excellence in UI design and Process Modelling. So far, they have modelled over 800 process flows base on eTOM models which have been extended to meet their specific requirements. All of these are stored within a common Rational Asset Manager instance which helps their business analysts to improve asst use and reuse.
Those process models feed directly into the model driven development method which is aligned with the requirements and process models. That MDD method uses WebSphere Integration Developer(WID), Rational Software Architect (RSA) for development and WebSphere Process Server (WPS) runtime. WebShere Business Modeler and WebShere Services Registry and Repository (WSRR) in support of the runtime. IBM GBS have put in place processes to support AT&T's development life cycle and governance requirements.
Key success factors that AT&T see include:
* AT&T have been through multiple de-mergers and mergers and acquisitions over the past 10 years resulting in a hugely complex IT environment.