Crossing the Ocean to “Discover” BAM, BI, BPM, BRE, CEP, EDA, ESP, and SOA

There have been a number of posts recently about Complex Event Processing (CEP), Business Intelligence (BI) and Business Activity Monitoring (BAM). 

For example, James Taylor, in Complex Event Processing is Not about BI, responds to John Trigg’s The Opportunity for Business Intelligence: Is it Evolution or Revolution? who was motivated by Larry Goldman, Customer Intelligence: Event-Processing Alphabet Soup and Curt Monash, The Era of Memory-Centric BI May Have Finally Started, and Phillip Howard’s Netezza: a Black Swan.

James Taylor makes the point that decision support must be a part of CEP.   John Trigg opines that folks should look at CEP and BI as parts of a larger collaborative solution, not as competing technologies in a buzz word turf war.  Larry Goldman makes that point that with all the buzz about CEP, BI, BPM, EDA, BRE, BAM and ESP, the technology is not revolutionary, but simply evolutionary.  

As for me, I agree with all of these views.

CEP, BI and BAM are simply today’s  buzz words for IT processes that can be implemented in numerous ways to accomplish the very similar “things.”  What is “that”?

Well, “that” is simply to take raw “sensory data” and turn that data  into knowledge that supports actions that are beneficial to organizations; and “that” is precisely the reason I introduced the concept of a fully functional reference architecture into the CEP market in early 2006 (See also, Intrusion Detection Systems & Multisensor Data Fusion, Communications of the ACM, 04/2000, Volume 43, Issue 4,  p.99-105).

In particular, note this post, What is Complex Event Processing? (Part 1), and the figure below.

Event Processing Reference Architecture

All of these market-driven buzzwords are square pegs that fit almost perfectly into the square holes of traditional event processing. There is nothing evolutionary nor revolutionary about the technologies.

Remember when Europeans sailed large ships across the great Atlantic ocean and “discovered” America?  What about the native Americans who lived in harmony with the vast natural resources and “discovered America” long before the foreign ships sailed into their lands.

The same holds true, metaphorically, in information technology. It is encouraging to see folks developing an understanding about solving complex distributed computing problems as they develop, acquire and market software for their customers.

However, this is not new, nor evolutionary nor revolutionary to IT professionals who have been doing this for many years.


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