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July 29, 2008

BRE Family Tree update shows IBM ILOG acquisition

The latest BRE Family Tree update is here. There you can download the new family tree in jpg, png, or tif formats. We have redesigned the family tree to show a lot more information than before. To make the chart less commercial, we got rid of the colors that indicated which BRE vendors were BIZRULES partners. Now the chart can be used by anyone, vendor, salesman, consultant, or customer who wants to see "the state of the BRE market" or who wants a guide to help them select their BRE vendor.

This new diagram also shows the connection to Rete, CLIPS, Jess, and Drools. Rule engines that use the Rete algorithm have an "R" flag. Engines based on CLIPS have a "C" flag. and engines based on Jess have a "J" flag.

We also show what environments each rule engine runs on (i.e. COBOL, C++, Java, and .Net), and whether it runs natively on that environment. This section is still under construction. We've asked BRE vendors to confirm this information, so we can finalize this section. We planned to present this chart for the first time at the upcoming October Rules Fest conference in Dallas, TX.  But now that IBM and ILOG are uniting, I thought you would like to see this chart now.  If you are a vendor representative, please take a look at your product data and let us know if we missed anything or if you'd like to update your product information. 

This is a guide to many of the leading BRE vendors that we are familiar with. It is not an exhaustive or complete list - there are probably other BREs on the market and not on the list that we haven't even heard of yet. Let us know who you are!  This guide is a good start for companies trying to evaluate and assess the BRE market. 

If you need more information about these BRE vendors, or if you need help selecting the best and the right rule engine for your particular needs, call BIZRULES at 305.994.9510. Some of you have asked for the BRE Family Tree poster... Call us for info about that.

BRE Family Tree 2008

March 13, 2008

Introducing the BIZRULES® RuleMap™

Documenting business rules is a good first step on the path towards the business rules approach.

But sometimes that's not enough.  Taking the next step and getting to the next level requires simulating business rules so they are easy to review and verify.

Over the past few months BIZRULES has been working on a new product that lets us do both. It's a visual tool that lets us not only draw diagrams of business rule models, it also lets us simulate the rule logic. This tool helps us speed up the rules harvesting process and improves the quality of our rulebooks.

BIZRULES® RuleMap™ is an interactive rulebook that models business rules and simulates business logic.  This logical model lets you see how your business rules really work. It lets you visualize the Reasoning Chain™ that leads to smart conclusions and right decisions.


We use this tool to document your business rules independent of any BRE - yet it can be implemented using any BRE. Again, this is a logical model of your business rules.  It can be used as the rulebook or specs for authoring the rules in any BRE.

Take a look at a sample RuleMap. And let us know what you think. Contact us for pricing or a web demo.

 

 

July 12, 2007

JOBS: Business Rule Anaysts & BRE Developers/Architects

BizRules is looking for

  • Business Rule Analysts
  • Business Requirements Analysts
  • BRE/BRMS developers & architects fluent with rule engines, especially ILOG JRules, PegaRULES PRPC, Haley Rules, and Fair Isaac Blaze Advisor
  • IBM WAS WebSphere Application Server / J2EE architects

for permanent full-time and long-term contract opportunities nationwide. If you have experience as a rules analyst, developer, or architect and are looking for challenging projects with Fortune 500 clients, contact BIZRULES or send your resume to

JOBS [at] BIZRULES.COM

305.994.9510

(See http://bizrules.com/us/page/careers.htm for more detailed job descriptions)

October 17, 2006

Revenue Recognition rules are good candidates for Business Rule Engines

The Business Rules Knowledgebase aims to keep you informed on the business rules market. Here's an item that just crossed my desk a few minutes ago.

Revenue recognition rules are hard to understand, they change often, they may be subject to interpretation, and they are difficult to program using conventional (i.e. procedural) programming languages. According the news item below, Pegasystems (a BizRules partner) is currently working on revenue recognition rules and timing rules.

I happen to know a little bit (very little!) about revenue recognition rules. One of our BIZRULES customers is successfully using the PegaRULES rules engine to manage and automate these types of accounting / financial rules. So I wouldn't be surprised if Pega begins to use its own proven rules engine to drive their improved internal revenue recognition process forward.

October 17, 2006 07:08 PM ET Pegasystems Delays Filing 3Q Report

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) - Business-process software company Pegasystems Inc. said Tuesday it will delay filing its third-quarter financial results while it continues an internal accounting review of the timing of revenue recognition for certain arrangements, including fixed-price services.

The company said it may restate previously issued financial statements when the review is complete. In the event of a restatement, Pegasystems said it expects that not more than $2 million of revenue previously reported through would be deferred into the 2006 third quarter or future periods.

source: http://news.moneycentral.msn.com/provider/providerarticle.asp?Feed=AP&Date=20061017&ID=6112462

October 13, 2006

Review: Pegasystems Unifies Process and Rules

Been travelling a bit lately so I'm finally getting around to reading the rags. An in-depth review of Pegasystems SmartBPM Suite in Intelligent Enterprise has been added to the Reviews section of the Business Rules Knowledge Base.

March 28, 2006

Six Myths of Rules and Business Process Management

Here's an interesting article about rules management and business process management that is right on the money:

"...what really matters are what the business owner has asked for: compliance, growth and productivity. The shortest path to these goals is through end-to-end automation of business processes that have at their core procedural flows and declarative business rules...

...Business rules are not an afterthought for successful BPM; rather, they are an essential component of it..."

See Six Myths of Rules and Business Process Management, By Dr. Setrag Khoshafian, VP of BPM Technology, Pegasystems

February 10, 2006

Rules 1.0

Executives used to have secretaries. Now they have Word.

Companies used to have IT/Finance modelers to do "what if" analysis. Now they have Excel.

Newspapers used to have strippers (no not that kind!) that did page layout by hand. Now they have PageMaker.

In the early days of the Web, you needed a Webmaster to create your website. Now you have FrontPage.

What's missing today in the business rules market is a tool that lets business executives write their own rules. Without IT, without programming, and maybe even without automation. Just a tool like Word (for textual rules), Excel (for decision tables), or even Visio (for decision trees) that simply lets me document "logical business rules". And then press File, Save as... "billing rules model 1.0", or "audit rules 1.0", etc. That's what I want to be able to do.

Sure, I'd like to push a button and have that logical rule model artifact go into a business rules repository. Great. If I could push another button and have my logical rule model generate code for whatever Business Rule Engine I'd like to target, now we're talking business rules.

That is the promise of business rules. I want to create a logical rule model, select my technology (i.e. HaleyRules, ILOG, PegaRULES, Versata, Fair Isaac Blaze Advisor, CA AION, Corticon, OpenRules, etc.) and then press GO. I want the tool to transform my logical business rule model into a physical business rule model. Then I want to compile and run.

That sounds farfetched, but I think it's only a year or two away. By the way, this is the same thing that database people do for a living. ERWin anyone? Create a logical database model, select your target physical databse model technology (i.e. SQLServer, DB2, INGRES, etc.), then press GO. This approach works for databases. It is inevitable that this approach will one day soon work for rulebases.

Let's start by calling the BRMS (business rule management system) a RBMS (rulebase management system) instead. Then we should call the business rules repository the rulebase. Business people will find it much easier to understand rulebases if they can compare it to the familiar database analogy.

We'll still need industrial strength rulebases like the ones I mentioned above. But we'll also need a "lite" rulebase software tool for business executives. Think Word, Excel, Visio.... or Access instead of SQLServer...

What if, or when will Microsoft or some other BRE vendor releases Rules 1.0? How about Microsoft Rules 1.0.? Maybe part of Office? What if executives finally have a tool on their desktop to write the rules? A tool that understands IF and THEN and ELSE and MUST and ONLY IF and MUST NOT etc.

I think a lot of business people have been led to believe that that's what business rules will mean to them. And their expectations are that the rule tool will be as easy to use as Excel or Word. I've noticed more and more companies approving business rule projects where the business people have the expectation that the business rules tool is something they can fire up on their PC... as easily as they do Word or Excel.

Business Rule Engine software products are clearly awesome productivity tools for programmers. But only a few of them could be considered tools for executives. We need to think of the BRE as the tool for IT developers and for rule execution, and the logical rule modeling tool I described above as the rule documentation tool for business executives.

I hope there are some companies working on this idea of a logical rules modeling tool that generates code for my BRE tool of choice.

Stay tuned... What do you think? Does Microsoft Rule? Anyone else?
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