Exclusive: AquaLogic dives deep into the process pool
Fuego acquisition arms BEA with a potent BPM arsenal
I found the embedded simulation tools to be pretty spectacular in BPM Studio -- perhaps the best I’ve seen. With quick point-and-click selection of the processes and resources I wanted to include, ALBPM came to life animating runtime flows and logging outcomes -- both graphically and lexically -- of the activities in play.
Instance results on activities run, queue backlogs, and time- and cost-based analysis provided insightful data for optimizing process definitions. Animation speed could be controlled or forgone all together, skipping right to the conclusion. And, the chance to tailor the queue processing order is essential to mimicking real-world scenarios.
There were some minor display issues while I was attempting to reconfigure view perspective during simulation -- blanking the screen of all data until simulation was restarted -- but otherwise, ALBPM performed solidly.
Reporting facilities, both on simulations and general project overviews, were quite comprehensive. I was able to quickly generate drillable HTML project reports with details on components, process maps, and even down to the underlying code base. Again, one of the most comprehensive reporting facilities I’ve seen to date.
Although ALBPM lacks plug-and-play application adapters, I am a fan of the ability to directly introspect technology interfaces using its supplied system adapters.
Supported technologies include .Net, COM, Java/EJB, SQL, CORBA, and more -- such as direct WSDL introspection for Web services and XML. They may take a little longer to set up than a hard-coded adapter but bring long-term cost savings and the advantage of flexible, parameterized deployment and reuse.
This product used to maintain a treasure trove of industry-specific templates for quick startup with best practices. BEA indicated it does not support the templates as a product, but will share them with customers upon request. The package does include goal-oriented samples for integrating various technologies. Further updates are still required to bolster general documentation, and the help facilities were basic at best. An application of this scale and cost requires better attention to such details.
Strong inherent capabilities for development, integration, analysis, and runtime availability make BEA AquaLogic BPM one of the most potent overall process management implementations in the market today. With some sprucing to humancentric usability, and continued simplification of development tactics, AquaLogic BPM should continue to impress into the future.
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