Friday, December 17, 2010

Who is the developer of event processing applications?

One of the topics is is frequently discussed recently is -- who should be the developer of event processing applications?  a computer programmer (the top picture) or a business analyst - the bottom picture taken from a site called "business analysts mentor",  shows what are the business analyst skill.   Will a future list will also include - event processing development?    

In the BRMS area, one of the claims is that business analysts can develop, maintain, modify and manage rules.  
There is still need in programmers for setting up the data, connect it, deploy it etc...

The desire to have business analysts develop event processing applications exists in the industry,  there are surveys indicating that most users want it,  and it combines with a general trend in enterprise computing.

Getting to event processing,  there are still challenges in getting business analysts developing event processing applications,  the challenge stems from the fact that the possibilities in event processing are quite wide, and thus there are two main options:

  1. Restrict the expressive power and provide the business analyst an "easy" sub-language.  This may be enough for some classes of applications, but not enough for others
  2. Provide assisting tools for business analysts to cope with the entire capabilities of the event processing language (e.g. patterns, policies).   This requires both the right abstractions (intention language) and also tools to validate that the system is working properly.     

Why it is not easy?    first -- the semantics of the event processing various functions needs understanding, while it is not a technical difficulty, it requires understanding and training,  second -- understanding the flow, i.e. the interactions among the various functions adds to the complexity.  
It is doable,  but requires more work on setting up the right tools.     More on this  - later. 

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