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New Post 10/1/2008 6:44 AM
User is offline vinny
66 posts
8th Level Poster


Re: can bpmn process begin with parallel gateway? 

Thanks for the continued assistance, Guy!

1.  I have yet to find an example of an intermediate message event that does not have an outgoing message flow leading to another event or task in a separate pool.  That is, I've not seen the 'sequence'

[task] --(sequence flow)-> [message event] --(sequence flow)-> [task].

All I've seen is

[task] --(sequence flow)-> [message event] --(message flow leading to separate pool)-> [event or task].

If the former is acceptable, I'll just put the Accounting Clerk and Programmer in the same pool and different swimlanes.  Pardon my ignorance, but I've searched exhaustively for an example that resembles the former format and couldn't find one.  Then again, common sense should tell me that I shouldn't be forced to create a separate participant every time I want to model that an e-mail is what triggers a process.

2.  Great explanation.  I'm getting better at this part.

I'm a developer.  I've learned that not adopting some form of standard generally leads to some degree of chaos.  For example, we had people on our team not adhering to (X)HTML and DOM standards.  As a result some of the Web pages may look nice in IE, but disastrous in FireFox.  By not adhering to the DOM, some of our functionality produces unexpected results when tested in various browsers.  Adhering to standards does not eliminate, but surely does mitigate problems.

I totally see what you're saying; but I'm pretty apprehensive about not adhering to standards.  After reading some of Bruce Silver's critiques on invalid BPMN, and considering that he's very knowledgeable of it, I simply chose the 'valid' route.  Plus I think that our stakeholders will appreciate the consistency.

Again, thanks so much for helping me out, Guy.  This is invaluable to me.

vinny

 
New Post 10/1/2008 7:03 AM
User is offline Guy Beauchamp
257 posts
www.smart-ba.com
5th Level Poster




Re: can bpmn process begin with parallel gateway? 

Vinny,

There is an example of task-> intermediate message event -> task on the BPMN cheat sheet to be found here. Ok it has an event based gateway in the way but that is only because there could be other events that terminate the process break - if there weren't it would be drawn as you described.

I see your points about standards now: you are trying to

1. mitigate the risk of failure

2. increase your liklihood of successful communication with your stakeholders

Good points so long as the BPMN standards can model how you need your requirements modelled and I guess you're saying "my starting point for reasons 1 and 2 is standards and I will only deviate when I have to" which I agree with.

Good debate, thanks!

Guy

 

 
New Post 10/1/2008 7:22 AM
User is offline vinny
66 posts
8th Level Poster


Re: can bpmn process begin with parallel gateway? 

Wow, great resource, Guy!  I am printing it off right now and will be using it frequently, I suspect.  Thanks for that and all of the other information that you provided during this discussion!

Regards,

vinny

 
New Post 10/6/2008 1:23 PM
User is offline vinny
66 posts
8th Level Poster


Re: can bpmn process begin with parallel gateway? 

Guy,

That BPMN Quick Reference Guide has been fantastic to have around.  I do, however, have one question about the diagram that has always confused me.  Do parallel paths need to occur at the same time?  I've been using a parallel path when sequence isn't applicable but all paths must complete before the process can continue.  For instance:

User can perform task A before task B or vice versa, but both tasks must complete prior to continuing with the process.

In the above example, I'd have both tasks stemming from parallel paths, and then merging into a parallel gateway --even though the tasks are not executing 'at the same time'.  In your opinion, is this correct usage or is there a more proper way?

Thanks,

vinny

 
New Post 10/6/2008 7:39 PM
User is offline KJ
243 posts
6th Level Poster


Re: can bpmn process begin with parallel gateway? 

Greeting Guy and Vinnie,

 

1: My take on the AND-Split (gateway) is, every path eminating from the gateway runs in parallel.

Consider this. Lets say the start event creates a token (call it T). At the AND-Split (gateway) T is split into sub-tokens T1,  T2, T3  etc. You need one subtoken for each path you have eminating from the AND-split. These subtokens can progress at different "speeds", some may start and complete later than others. The AND-Join waits for all the sub-tokens to arrive so that it can JOIN them together to recreate the original token T.

A good resource for this kind of thing is the Van der AAlst website.

See http://is.tm.tue.nl/research/patterns/patterns.htm

To see the AND-split (parralel-gateway) in action watch http://is.tm.tue.nl/research/patterns/download/swf/pat_2.swf

for the AND-JOIN watch http://is.tm.tue.nl/research/patterns/download/swf/pat_3.swf

 

I trust the above helps a bit

warm regards

K

 
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