TRAK

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Structure of TRAK - formed from 1 metamodel, 5 architecture perspectives and 21 architecture viewpoints

TRAK is a general enterprise architecture framework aimed at systems engineers based on MODAF 1.2.

History[edit]

TRAK was originally commissioned by London Underground Limited.[1][2] Development started in 2009 and was based on the then current views of architectural description within London Underground which were based on ISO/IEC 42010 and tied to the systems engineering lifecyle defined in ISO/IEC 15288 .

Although the original intent was to develop a rail-specific architecture framework in adapting MODAF to suit local needs any defence or domain-specific content was removed and the result was a domain-free metamodel and viewpoints that were only based on representing complex systems.

TRAK was released under open source licenses in February 2010.

It has been formally adopted by the UK Department for Transport who chair the TRAK Steering Group that manages the overall direction, strategy and formal releases of TRAK.

The TRAK development team received a Working Group award.[3] (photo on the INCOSE Transportation Working Group page [4]). TRAK was a finalist for the 2011 IET Innovation Awards.[5]

Terminology[edit]

Architecture Tuple
An architectural element with a named stereotype which has a named relationship to either the same or another element e.g. <<Organisation>> A 'has part' <<Job>> B. It follows the natural language construct of Subject - Predicate - Object - also used in RDF
Master Architecture View
Each TRAK metamodel stereotype has a master architecture view type. Within an architecture description or model each element has to be declared or shown on its master architecture view type before it can be used on any other view type.
Perspective
ISO/IEC 42010:2007 refers to an Architectural Perspective as 'Sharing of architectural models also facilitates an "aspect-oriented" style of architectural description'[6] A grouping of related and overlapping architectural views.
Viewpoint
ISO/IEC 42010:2007 - A viewpoint defines a set of conventions (notations, languages and model types) for constructing a certain kind of view.

TRAK Structure[edit]

Structure of TRAK - formed from 1 metamodel, 5 architecture perspectives and 21 architecture viewpoints

TRAK is defined in a logical way - that is to say free of any notion of how TRAK is implemented in any tool or any architecture description language.

TRAK has 21 architecture viewpoints which are grouped into 5 perspectives. Each viewpoint belongs to a single perspective and specifies a single view (type). Each viewpoint specifies what sets of types of architectural description element and relationships (tuples) can appear. The architectural description element types and relationships are specified by the TRAK metamodel.

The logical definition of TRAK consists of 3 documents, each of which is an open source project on Sourceforge:

  • TRAK Enterprise Architecture Framework document.[7] This controls TRAK as a whole. It defines the TRAK Architecture Perspectives, colours, bye laws (rules affecting the design of TRAK, architecture views and architecture descriptions, minimal modelling process.
  • TRAK Enterprise Architecture Framework Viewpoints document.[8] This defines the TRAK architecture viewpoints.
  • TRAK Enterprise Architecture Framework Metamodel document.[9] This defines the architecture description elements that can appear in a viewpoint definition.

TRAK Architecture Perspectives[edit]

TRAK has 5 architecture perspectives,[7] each of which groups together architecture viewpoints and views of an overlapping subject area:

  • Enterprise Perspective
  • Concept Perspective
  • Procurement Perspective
  • Solution Perspective
  • Management Perspective

Enterprise Perspective[edit]

This perspective covers the enduring capabilities that are needed as part of the bigger enterprise.These are high level needs that everything else contributes to and form part of the long term strategic objectives that need to be managed.

Concept Perspective[edit]

The concept perspective covers the logical view of what is needed in response to the capabilities required by the enterprise in the enterprise perspective. It covers the logical connection of nodes, for example a service control centre, to other nodes with no recognition of how this might be realised either by organisation or technology. It also implies no particular part of a life cycle – it covers everything from concept to disposal ("lust to dust"!).

Procurement Perspective[edit]

The procurement perspective provides a top level view of the solution to the enterprise capability needs outlined in the enterprise perspective and developed in the concept perspective. It provides a way of showing how projects deliver the solutions described in the solution perspective to provide capability. It provides a way of showing time dependency between projects and is an essential for investigating capability gaps.

Solution Perspective[edit]

The solution perspective provides views about the solution – whether proposed or realised. It covers the parts of ‘systems’ whether human or machine, their exchanges and protocols. The solution perspective describes how organisations and equipment are organised and governed. The solution perspective describes how the logical requirements outlined in the concept perspective are realised and shows how the solution(s) realise the capability needed by the enterprise and described in the enterprise perspective.

Management Perspective[edit]

The management perspective provides views that describe the architectural task and those relationships that are common across other perspectives. It provides ways of defining the scope and findings of the architectural task - structuring the approach and modelling.

The management perspective provides ways of describing the normative standards that apply. It contains views that provide supporting information to aid the portability and understanding of the model(s).

TRAK Architecture Viewpoints & Views[edit]

Each architecture view in TRAK is specified by a corresponding architecture viewpoint. The viewpoint is designated using a 'p' in the numbering e.g. a CVp-01 is the architecture viewpoint that specifies a CV-01 architecture view.

In general use if there is a risk of confusion with a similarly-numbered view in another framework such as DODAF or MODAF then a namespace prefix is used e.g. TRAK::SV-01

TRAK defines 21 architecture viewpoints[8] (by comparison DODAF 2.0 has 52 views/models, MODAF 1.2.004 has 47 views and NAF 3.1 has 49 subviews [10])

  • Enterprise Perspective
    • EVp-01 Enterprise Goals
    • EVp-02 Capability Hierarchy
    • EVp-03 Capability Phasing
  • Concept Perspective
    • CVp-01 Concept Need
    • CVp-03 Concept Item Exchange
    • CVp-04 Concept Activity to Capability Mapping
    • CVp-05 Concept Activity
    • CVp-06 Concept Sequence
  • Procurement Perspective
    • PrVp-01 Procurement Structure
    • PrVp-02 Procurement Timeline
    • PrVp-03 Procurement Responsibility
  • Solution Perspective
    • SVp-01 Solution Structure
    • SVp-02 Solution Resource Interaction
    • SVp-03 Solution Resource Interaction to Function Mapping
    • SVp-04 Solution Function
    • SVp-05 Solution Function to Concept Activity Mapping
    • SVp-06 Solution Competence
    • SVp-07 Solution Sequence
  • Management Perspective
    • MVp-01 Architecture Description Dictionary
    • MVp-02 Architecture Description Design Record
    • MVp-03 Requirements & Standards

These defined in the TRAK Viewpoints specification. Additional information is provided in a community wiki.[11]

TRAK Metamodel[edit]

The TRAK Metamodel - defines Allowed Object Types and Relationships for Use in TRAK Architecture Descriptions

The TRAK Metamodel[9] both simplifies and extends the basic concepts within the MODAF 1.2 metamodel. It has removed and redefined stereotypes and any defence-specific constructs have been removed. The TRAK Metamodel specification contains a comparison of the TRAK metamodel at initial release against MODAF 1.2.003. This is also outlined separately.[12]

The TRAK metamodel is shown below. Note that this is not a controlled copy.

Significant changes vs MODAF include:

  • the TRAK metamodel is aimed at users (the MODAF M3 is an abstract UML profile intended as a specification for tool vendors to implement MODAF - there is no metamodel for users only fragments of 'simplified metamodel' which aim to represent the more complicated M3). In TRAK the metamodel shown is the master one.
  • System is central to TRAK and can represent hard systems and soft systems (in MODAF 1.2.003 System is an artefact[13] and part of the Physical Architecture and cannot include non physical parts[14] )
  • TRAK can represent any type of interface exchange / flow - information, energy or resource
  • TRAK can represent exchange characteristics associated with human resources - Organisations, Jobs and Roles
  • TRAK includes means to represent requirements through the Standard (document/collection) and Requirement (atomic) stereotypes and enforced by Contract
  • TRAK includes the means to plan and describe the architecture task and architecture description and its organisation as a view (MV-02 Architecture Description Design Record)
  • other types of dependency and associations can be represented - physical, membership, responsibility extent
  • addition of ISO/IEC 42010 concepts to represent the architectural task, architecture description and architecture views - to allow a description of the task scope, purpose, findings
  • addition of consistency rules for content and context to improve navigation and visibility of content
  • rules that constrain how and in what order relationships can be made to improve the consistency of the set of views that forms the architecture description

Structurally there are other changes:

  • TRAK has 21 viewpoints (vs c 47 views in MODAF)
  • the each viewpoint content is defined in terms of tuples (a stereotype - relationship - stereotype construct) and has mandatory, optional and minimum acceptable content and correspondence rules with respect to other views within the architecture description

The way in which TRAK is managed and released via a set of open source projects is also quite different from other enterprise architecture frameworks. All change requests and feature requests and the sentencing of them are fully visible to anyone, not restricted to those who specify or develop the framework.[15][16][17] Releases are under change control and all history is maintained by versioning software (Subversion (SVN)).

Presentation of TRAK Views[edit]

TRAK does not specify a notation or presentation language (architecture description language in ISO/IEC 42010 terminology) in which to present the architecture views. TRAK architecture descriptions are not therefore UML, SysML or BPMN models although any of these notations can be used to prepare at least some of the views (an ADL might not contain the necessary concepts/stereotypes or might not allow them to be connected in the way needed to represent a TRAK architecture view).

TRAK is a logical definition - it specifies what needs to be shown and minimum acceptable content but does not mandate how you achieve it.

ISO 42010 Considerations[edit]

TRAK applies ISO/IEC 42010 in the following ways:-

  • an architecture description is a response to a task which addresses a stakeholder's concerns (this is addressed using the TRAK::MVp-02 Architecture Description Design Record Viewpoint)
  • each TRAK architecture view is specified by a viewpoint within the TRAK architecture framework
  • each TRAK viewpoint identifies the stakeholders, concerns addressed, anti-concerns (things the viewpoint is not to be used for), the metamodel tuples needed, the metamodel tuples allowed, well-formedness (minimum acceptable content) and consistency rules with other views within the architecture description
  • correspondence rules are defined by viewpoints and for an architecture description using the TRAK metamodel.

An overall comparison between TRAK and [ISO/IEC 42010] is made in the TRAK Enterprise Architecture Framework document. A more detailed comparison against the emerging version of the standard (as represented by the Final Committee Draft version dated 8 June 2010[18]) is made separately.[19]

Creating an Architecture Description Using TRAK[edit]

TRAK itself does not mandate process. There is an element of process introduced, however, because TRAK adheres to ISO/IEC 42010 which states that an architecture description is produced in response to a task and the task stakeholder concerns and also because TRAK has master architecture views which creates dependencies between views and results in minimum allowed architecture view sets.

This gives rise to a minimal process which is:

  • identify the task stakeholder and their concerns
  • using the TRAK Viewpoints select the Viewpoints needed to address the stakeholder concerns
  • develop views that conform to these viewpoints that address these concerns
  • these in turn may require additional views to be prepared to form a legitimate allowed view set
  • document the purpose, concerns, findings and the architecture description using a MV-02 Architecture Design Record View supplemented by a MV-01 Architecture Dictionary View

Licensing[edit]

TRAK is released under 2 forms of open source license:

  • GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL) for the logical definition - TRAK Overall, TRAK Metamodel and TRAK Viewpoints documents
  • GNU Public License (GPL) for implementations of TRAK - UML profile for TRAK for general UML modelling tools and TRAK MDG Technology for Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect modelling tool.

Tool Support[edit]

TRAK supports modelling tools through the following mechanisms:

A comparison of the stereotype (concepts) in the UML against those in the TRAK Metamodel [24] provides an analysis, for the UML Profile for TRAK, what TRAK Viewpoints and therefore TRAK Views UML is able to represent fully, partially and not at all. This is a consequence of the constructs available in UML and the particular implementation in the UML Profile for TRAK and arises because different architecture description languages (ADLs) are often design for different purposes and sometimes different domains i.e. in ISO/IEC 42010 the concerns they address are different from those that the architecture framework, in this case TRAK, does.

As tools represent an implementation of the logical definition of TRAK they may contain limitations or errors owing to the notation language (architecture description language) used and tool-specific capabilities.

Examples of Architecture Description Using TRAK[edit]

  • Sub Surface Upgrade Programme (SSUP). Upgrade of signalling and rolling stock for Circle, Hammersmith, Metropolitan and District lines on London Underground. Cited in Rail Value for Money Study. Whole System Programme Management Report. 25 May 2011.[2]
  • Technical Strategy Leadership Group (TSLG). Railway Functional Architecture[25]
  • Rail Safety & Standards Board (RSSB). UK Railway Functional Architecture. Ongoing research - RSSB Research & Development E-newsletter. Issue 66. Oct. 2010.[26] Justification for the selection/use of TRAK is provided in the summary report for the task.[27] The T912 railway functional architecture project is described separately.[28]
  • University of Birmingham. InfraGuidER (Infrastructure Guidelines for Environmental Railway Performance) deliverables 9 and 18.,[29] minutes: D22: 2nd Workshop for EURNEX (European Rail Research Network of Excellence) poles of excellences [30]
  • Integrated EA 2011. Managing Risk and Cost with an EA Approach. Mike Brownsword (Atego) & Joe Silmon (Centre for Railway Research and Education).,[31]

References[edit]

  1. ^ IET Forums - TRAK - The Rail Architecture Framework
  2. ^ a b Rail Value for Money Study. Whole System Programme Management Report. 25 May 2011 http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk/upload/pdf/rvfm-atkins-programme-management-250511.pdf
  3. ^ INCOSE 2010 Working Group Award http://www.incose.org/practice/techactivities/wg/transport/
  4. ^ INCOSE Transportation Working Group http://www.incose.org/practice/techactivities/wg/transport/
  5. ^ IET Innovation Awards 2001 - Finalists http://conferences.theiet.org/innovation/finalists/index.cfm
  6. ^ ANSI/IEEE Std 1471 :: ISO/IEC 42010 Recommended Practice for Architectural Description of Software-Intensive Systems
  7. ^ a b TRAK Enterprise Architecture
  8. ^ a b TRAK Enterprise Architecture Viewpoints
  9. ^ a b TRAK Enterprise Architecture Metamodel
  10. ^ Trak-community.org::Wiki::Architecture Framework Comparison http://trak-community.org/index.php/wiki/Architecture_Framework_Comparison
  11. ^ http://trak-community.org/index.php/wiki/TRAK:TRAK_Viewpoints
  12. ^ http://trak-community.org/index.php/wiki/TRAK:Initial_TRAK_Baseline_vs_MODAF_-_Stereotypes
  13. ^ MODAF Metamodel 1.2.004 MODAF version 1.2.004
  14. ^ The MODAF System Viewpoint(SV) 26 April 2010
  15. ^ Sourceforge. TRAK Project Bug/Change Trackers. http://sourceforge.net/tracker/?group_id=393432
  16. ^ Sourceforge. TRAK Metamodel Project Bug/Change Trackers. http://sourceforge.net/tracker/?group_id=304403
  17. ^ Sourceforge. TRAK Viewpoints Project Bug/Change Trackers. http://sourceforge.net/tracker/?group_id=304405
  18. ^ ISO/IEC 42010 Systems and Software engineering — Architecture Description. (Final Committee Draft 8 June 2010
  19. ^ TRAK. Enterprise Architecture Framework. TRAK vs ISO/IEC 42010
  20. ^ MDG Technology for TRAK
  21. ^ trakmoodtemp Project on Sourceforge
  22. ^ trakomnigraffle Project on Sourceforge
  23. ^ trakforvisio Project on Sourceforge
  24. ^ http://sourceforge.net/projects/trak/files/Suitability_of_Architecture_Description_Languages/UML/ trak project on Sourceforge
  25. ^ Technical Strategy Leadership Group (TSLG). Railway Functional Architecture. http://www.futurerailway.org/Research/Pages/Railway-Function-Architecture.aspx
  26. ^ RSSB Research & Development E-newsletter. Issue 66. Oct. 2010. Topic T912 The Railway Functional Architecture http://www.rssb.co.uk/SiteCollectionDocuments/research/enews/rd_enewsletter66.htm
  27. ^ The Railway Functional Architecture Summary Report http://www.rssb.co.uk/sitecollectiondocuments/pdf/reports/research/T912_rpt_final.pdf
  28. ^ RSSB. Project T912 The Railway Functional Architecture. http://www.rssb.co.uk/RESEARCH/Lists/DispForm_Custom.aspx?ID=955
  29. ^ InfraGuidER Deliverables http://www.infraguider.eu/prodotti_7.html
  30. ^ Minutes: D22: 2nd Workshop for EURNEX poles of excellences http://infraguider.eu/doc/INFRAG_WP5_NIT_DV_022_B.pdf
  31. ^ Integrated EA 2011: Managing Risk and Cost with an EA Approach http://www.integrated-ea.com/file_download/101/

External links[edit]