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Design and Implementation of a Runtime Environment of an Object-Aware Process Management System

Steinau, Sebastian (2015) Design and Implementation of a Runtime Environment of an Object-Aware Process Management System. Masters thesis, Ulm University.

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Abstract

Contemporary business process management systems manage their processes based on the activity-centric paradigm. However, many business processes are un- or semistructured and cannot be represented adequately by the activity-centric paradigm. The fundamental reason for this insufficiency is the lack of cohesion between processes on one hand and data on the other. Object-aware process management provides a solution for this issue by tightly integrating processes with data. Data is represented as structured object types with complex data dependencies. This is mirrored in the concepts of object behavior and object interactions. Object behavior is captured in micro processes, whereas object interactions are represented by macro processes. Both micro and macro processes are integral parts of the runtime of an object-aware process management system. Furthermore, the execution of micro and macro processes is governed by process rules. The process rules advance the process state depending on the available data, react to user interactions or perform error handling. PHILharmonicFlows is a framework that aims at the proper support of object-aware processes. A prototype implementing the framework is currently under development. This thesis contributes to the prototype by describing concepts concerning process rules and by providing implementations as well. In detail, the contributions are as follows. The ongoing development of the prototype requires process rules to be easily created and altered, i.e. to enable a high maintainability. Therefore, a high level of abstraction for the process rule definitions is necessary. The Process Rule Framework enables the creation and alteration of process rules and satisfies the high maintainability requirement by leveraging functional programming devices. Using the Process Rule Framework, a high productivity can be achieved when handling process rules. Moreover, the Process Rule Framework has the possibility to be extended to a general-purpose rule engine in which rules may be created, compiled and executed during runtime. At runtime, process rules provide one of the cornerstones to object-aware process execution. This requires complex interactions between process rules, as they can trigger each other and therefore chain together. The challenge is to enable these interactions while keeping the individual process rules independent from each other and only loosely coupled. The Process Rule Manager enables the complex interactions between process rules by providing the means to coordinate and control process rule interactions. Additionally, the Process Rule Manager abstracts from the inner workings of process execution and provides a well-defined interface to interact with a micro process.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Subjects:DBIS Research > Master and Phd-Thesis
ID Code:1131
Deposited By: Prof. Dr. Manfred Reichert
BibTex Export:BibTeX
Deposited On:27 Feb 2015 12:24
Last Modified:27 Feb 2015 12:24

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