The Process Practice

Process engineering with the Eclipse Process Framework and Rational Method Composer

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RMC 7.5 released today

28 October, 2008 (11:45) | Rational Method Composer | By: Peter

The new version 7.5 of Rational Method Composer is available today. Despite its version number this is a major new release of this modeling environment and framework. The most important addition is all new content referred to as IBM Practices, as well as tool features around practices that allow you to create and manage your own agile mashups. Find in there core agile practices that you know from literature and allow you to assemble processes that combine the best of approaches such as Scrum, XP, OpenUP. In addition, we provide practices that allow you to scale up your agile development projects based on IBM’s own experience in doing agile development work in very large globally distributed development projects. Every practice also provides guidance for implementing it into your organization as well as and metrics to use to self-assess how successfully you adopt each practice. See the image below for lists of the most important practices available for scaling agile development.

New IBM Practices available in RMC 7.5

New IBM Practices available in RMC 7.5

Use the new RMC process builder perspective to intuitively browse and select these practices using a simple shopping cart paradigm to assemble and publish a Web site to get you started. Then evolve these practices using RMC to make them your practices that reflect your way of working or add your own.

In addition to the support for practices we provide many new other capabilities and enhancements addressing many customer requests such as command line publishing, spell checking, a graphical image map editor, tagging, query-based categories, an integration with Rational Asset Manager, and many more. Check out the official annonucement document for more details on the new features. Also watch this space for additional collateral that we are providing on DeveloperWorks and around IBM Practices and RMC in the coming days and weeks.


Comment from Marc Hoffmann
Time: October 29, 2008, 2:49 pm

Hello Peter,

I am EmeriCon’s Chief Methodologist and have only recently used RMC to better document our methodologies. I have enjoyed browsing through your blog, which provides very helpful and very insightful information for a beginner like me.

I have two questions/comments for you:
1. Do you have any documentation, white papers, forum threads that discuss “best practices” on how to structure your method plug-ins? For example, what should be the granularity of tasks, activities, and processes? What are recommended ways to structure plug-ins, to allow a lot of reuse at a “base” plug-in level?

2. I started using RMC 7.5 today after having worked in RMC 7.2 for a few weeks. I am a little concerned about the Help section. It seems that an awful lot of RAM information is included and it seems to confuse me. The RMC 7.2 Help included a very useful Glossary, which seems to have been removed from 7.5. Do you have any idea where it went?

Thank you again for sharing your knowledge with the RMC user community.


Comment from Peter
Time: October 29, 2008, 5:13 pm

Thanks for your feedback Marc.

(1) Yes, we are going to release the Method Authoring Method (MAM) as a download for customers soon (I will announce it here in the blog, once it comes online). This is a method framework that our team created to document exactly what you are asking for: our practices for designing, managing, and authoring method content and processes with RMC. It has a particular focus on the Practices library that ships with 7.5 as it represent the current reference architecture that we also recommend to clients for their own content. Actually, if you follow the design guidelines described there you would be able to easily combine your content with content from any of the practices that we ship.

(2) I agree with you. This is one of the downsides working in a large organization such as IBM: some design decisions for shared components are not made by the product teams. Hence, we had to live with the way RAM contributes its content. I actually filed this as a defect against the RAM client, as it really a supplementary tool that should not take over the online help like that. I hope this can be fixed in the near future. Same with the Glossary. It was an IBM mandate that we had to link to the global IBM glossary and add our terms to it there. Of course, with a 300k organization like IBM you get a very large corporate glossary and you now have to sift through hundreds of terms that you are not interested in. I do not understand the rationale behind that decision myself, but this is just my personal view on this.

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