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PlugIT results: Methods and experiences for application integration and production

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  1. PlugIT results: Methods and experiences for application integration and production Juha Mykkänen HIS R & D Unit, University of Kuopio PlugIT seminar 30 August 2004, Kuopio

  2. In this presentation • Challenges for application integration and production • PlugIT application integration results (other than interfaces), some examples • PlugIT application production and development results, some examples • Experiences • Where to find more information • marked with [ ]

  3. Recognized challenges for application integration • Heterogeneity on many levels: functionality, technology, architecture, standards, terminologies • Software processes (research + standardization) do not consider existing applications, lack of implementations • Integration solutions (industry) cheap and fast (once), expensive and laboursome (repeated), lack of systematic approach • Different types of integration needs (usability, redundancy, interactivity, data transfer) • Huge amount of local adaptation • Integration specification methods, integration models • Precise definition, standardization, conformance testing

  4. Recognized challenges for application production • Lack of reuse • Need for architectural vision • Migration from legacy systems • New technologies give new possibilities • Component-based software-engineering • Quality problems in applications • Software verification and validation, software testing • Gather experiences, apply several different methods, technologies and tools

  5. Goals of method portfolios (in 2002) • How to Plug IT (integration) • integrate application easier, faster, more efficiently • define and test new approaches for integration • support open interfaces with examples, methods and practices • improve reuse of integration solutions • increase use of standards and ease their introduction • How to Do IT (production) • efficient production of new applications move towards component- and service-based development • support tool selections for application production and integration • support software development process (engineering, implementation, testing, introduction, maintenance) with methods and tools • identify and acknowledge integration goals in software production

  6. Results: background studies etc. (integration AND production) • Survey of current status of healthcare software development [15] • Number of related studies • technologies [1] • tools [2] • testing methods and tools [various] • healthcare standards [various, 3, 16] • Workshops • biannual seminar workshops (interface and method development, training) • software testing day • BEA Systems, Microsoft, Oracle, PICNIC workshops

  7. Results: Application Integration

  8. Results: Integration methods • Supporting assets for integration work (and interfaces) of PlugIT project • multilateral collaboration for open integration specification [4] • integration specification process for integration projects in general [4] • specification guidelines and examples [4] • evaluation and selection of standards [3] • PlugIT interface conformance testing (PlugIT-leima) [5] • reference implementations [5] • dynamic model for integration of business applications [15] • Available for integration solution specification and evaluation of integration solutions

  9. Goals of application integration • Process and workflow improvements, e.g. reduce overlapping actions (re-keying, maintenance, development) and data • Right information, right place ,right time • users / professionals + management (~EAI) PlugIT focus • partner organizations, regional systems (~B2B) • customers, patients (~B2C) • Cost savings • Requirements for methods and solutions • reduce local tailoring, repeatability, reuse • low introduction threshold for real-world integration projects • must fit into various organizations, application environments, technologies • must find balance between: Local requirements + Standards + Existing systems • emphasis on collaboration and open solutions

  10. Requirements-driven Goal-oriented Multilateral Participants have also ”other duties” In PlugIT open specifications (design) local or product-specific implementation Project startup Funcional design Design phase Technical design Constant process improvement Implementation of process changes, education Implementation phase Application finalization/ implementation of components Deployment, introduction Project conclusion Phases in integration project [adapted from: Saranummi, Tolppanen: Järjestelmäintegraatio-projektin vaiheet, 2003.]

  11. Results: multilateral integration + specifications [4] Three types of participants – solutions must benefit all Background, prioritization, design – real needs Benefits of implementation and introduction Specification of open and reusable integration solutions [Mykkänen, Tikkanen, Rannanheimo, Eerola, Korpela. Specification Levels and Collaborative Definition for the Integration of Health Information Systems. Proceedings of Medical Informatics Europe 2003].

  12. Results: how to define integration solutions? [4] Requirements + process improvement Solutions in the participating applications [Mykkänen, Porrasmaa, Rannanheimo, Korpela: A process for specifying integration for multi-tier applications in healthcare. Int J Med Inf 2003:70(2-3):173-182.] Incremental specification, examples and guidelines for phases, aim at comprehensive and accurate solutions, but straightforward and repeatable method Technology standards, tool support Healthcare-specific standards and models

  13. Results: Conformance testing in PlugIT [5]

  14. Results: Conformance testing experiences [5] • Developed and used conformance testing method, test cases and test tool with Context management case • Test suite (test cases, reports, tools) for conformance testing • Specifications (and their conformance clauses) not enough for certification • Implementations required to validate specifications • reference implementations provided by PlugIT: also testing services needed • Testing gives valuable feedback • to software developers, quality improvement • to the specification process and standardization • interface testing is not certification, necessary but not sufficient for interoperability

  15. Dynamic model for the integration in enterprise service architecture [15] • Dynamic model to improve interoperability of business applications in service-based architecture • Businesses produce outcome products in collaborative networks • Business process of an enterprise or an organisation is seen as set of services • Business process consists of result of several services • Evolve software architecture with service paradigm to improve integration of business applications • Goal is to provide an information system migration path for enterprises to achieve business goals and competitiveness • Karhunen H: Dynaaminen malli liiketoimintasovellusten integroimiseksi. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 15.

  16. Experiences from multilateral integration definition and implementation [4] • 9 teams, 14 integration targets, different types of needs • Specification and implementation of integration solutions • Knowledge of integration domain necessary in solution specification • Most urgent integration needs in first iterations (minimum level), versioning • Specification and implementation as separate “projects”, especially in open integration (implementation benefits, protection of competitive edge) • Controlled introduction of new solutions and technologies, migration for applications and organizations, reference implementations • Standards and local solutions • Standards, technologies and tools have effects on many levels, support and resources needed to evaluate solutions • Top-down: healthcare-specific standards should be based on common technologies • Bottom-up: collection of solutions from existing applications requires, generalization (design conventions, harmonization, standardization process) • Evaluation and certification is necessary, external certification authority • Flexibility using open technologies and separation of data from functionality • Multilateral integration projects • Participants from different disciplines, combination of expertise, common language • Management-level commitment – requirements, resources, timeframe • Research group as a neutral moderator in specification, “consultant” in implementation • Local and product-specific aspects (introduction, maintenance, ownership) separated from open specification [Mykkänen, Porrasmaa, Korpela, Häkkinen, Toivanen, Tuomainen, Häyrinen, Rannanheimo. Integration Models in Health Information Systems: Experiences from the PlugIT project. Medinfo 2004].

  17. Results: Software development process

  18. Results: software development process • Technology and tool studies [1,2] • Pakkanen: case study of software development process [13] • requirements engineering • component-based software • related to integration and testing in PlugIT • Software testing methods and studies [various] • UML-based testing • testing component-based systems • how to test software • control of testing processes • testing tools, automatization • defect management

  19. Pakkanen: case study of software development methods [13] • Piloting many different methods for software design and development: Case: user id management (university) • Applied component-based software design process (Cheesman&Daniels) • Requirements: combination of three methods, input for design • Design: defined service architecture, interfaces, components, database • Implementation: implemented components using many tools and technologies (J2EE, .NET), database migration example, integration example • Testing: system and acceptance testing • Evaluated methods and technologies: main lesson: Adequate specifications before implementation provide savings in implementation, deployment and maintenance – understanding does not necessarily require laborious analysis

  20. Pakkanen publication:Soveltamiskokemuksia ohjelmistotuotannon menetelmistä: vaatimusmäärittely, käyttöliittymäsuunnittelu, arkkitehtuurisuunnittelu, toteutus ja testaus. [13]

  21. Pakkanen: implementation tools used [13] = application logic = user interface

  22. Results: software testing [various] • Identified goal: improve methods and practices for software quality assurance and testing • UML-based testing • Testing component-based systems • How to test software • Control of testing processes • Testing tools, automatization • Defect management • Software inspections •

  23. Testing results examples • Applied software inspection method with Pakkanen [13] • goal: to introduce and evaluate the inspection method • two inspection meetings were organized • results: increased quality of documentation: about 40 improvement suggestions/defects in one meeting • Research of Test Process Management • Levels and methods of Software Testing • Sample test documents with test cases • More examples tomorrow • component-based testing • testing experiences of a Hospital Information System

  24. Summary • These results are not separated from requirements (previously today) or integration solutions (next) • Application integration and development are more and more related • 1/3 of system acquisition costs deals with integration • Requirements and testing phases in software development (and integration) need more support • methods, tools, relation to development • Interdisciplinary research teams and multilateral collaboration to achieve concrete goals • new ideas, useful results • and new research topics..

  25. References [1] Component and service technology families. Mykkänen, Sormunen, Karvinen, Tikkanen, Päiväniemi. Studies and reports of the PlugIT project 1. [2] Ohjelmistotuotannon välineselvitys - näkökulmia terveydenhuollon ohjelmistoyrityksen välinesalkun kokoamiseen. Karvinen, Riekkinen, Virkanen, Mykkänen, Sormunen, Porrasmaa, Tikkanen. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 2. [3] Standardien arviointi ja valinta terveydenhuollon sovellusintegraatiossa. Mykkänen, Häyrinen, Savolainen, Porrasmaa. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 3. [4] Terveydenhuollon sovellusintegraatioratkaisujen määrittely. Mykkänen, Porrasmaa, Rannanheimo, Tikkanen, Sormunen, Korpela, Häyrinen, Eerola, Häkkinen, Toivanen. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 4. [5] Avointen integrointiratkaisujen hyödyntäminen, toteuttaminen ja testaus. Mykkänen, Toroi, Karhunen, Virkanen, Mäki, Sormunen, Rannanheimo, Tuomainen. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 5.

  26. References [13] Soveltamiskokemuksia ohjelmistotuotannon menetelmistä: vaatimusmäärittely, käyttöliittymäsuunnittelu, arkkitehtuurisuunnittelu, toteutus ja testaus. Riekkinen, Karvinen, Virkanen, Reponen, Ikävalko, Silvennoinen, Savolainen, Porrasmaa, Laitinen. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 13. [14] Ohjelmistotuotannon nykytilaselvitys 2003 - kohderyhmänä terveydenhuollon ohjelmistoyritykset ja organisaatiot. Porali, Riekkinen, Pohjolainen, Mykkänen, Toroi, Kärkkäinen, Eerola. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 14. [15] Dynaaminen malli liiketoimintasovellusten integroimiseksi. Karhunen. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 15. [16] HIPAA-lainsäädäntö terveystietojen sähköisen käsittelyn näkökuömasta - katsaus USA:n terveyslakiin. Reponen. PlugIT-hankkeen selvityksiä ja raportteja 16. [various] See: