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What What? and other taxonomic tangles

One of the huge challenges of trying to make things simple in a complex context is that often it can make at first make things seem more complicated. For a while, anyway, until things settle down a bit, and the

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Metatheory and enterprise-architecture

“What’s the theory of enterprise-architecture?”, a colleague asked the other day. “Is there any kind of coherent and consistent theory behind it that holds it all together?” Short answer: no. Slightly longer answer: yes. Or sort-of, rather. Both no and yes

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Why service, function and capability

Ah definitions, definitions – so many to choose from! But somehow, only a limited number of labels to go around, to share out amongst all those definitions? Which means that people end up using the same labels for different things,

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John Zachman and the curate’s egg

A couple evenings ago the BCS (British Computer Society) held a open question-and-answer session with John Zachman at the EAC-BPM conference in London. How much has the Zachman Framework for enterprise-architecture changed over the past decades – and particularly over the

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Declaring the assumptions

Moving onward with this exploration of how I’m reframing the way I work, a key part is around identifying the constraints of that work: where and how the tools work, and – perhaps even more important – being clear about

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Organisation and enterprise as ‘how’ and ‘why’

What’s the relationship between organisation and enterprise? In particular, how would we work with that relationship in enterprise-architecture? This one’s a follow-on from both ‘Fractals, naming and enterprise-architecture‘ and ‘Organisation and enterprise‘, and, more specifically, is a response to Len

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Fractals, naming and enterprise-architecture

What naming do we need, when we’re doing architectures for every part of the enterprise? Yeah, I know this is another one that I go on and on about, but it’s just too bad: we need to resolve this one –

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Organisation and enterprise

What is an enterprise? Perhaps more specifically, what is ‘the enterprise’ in enterprise-architecture? (Quick TL;DR summary: in enterprise-architecture, ‘the enterprise’ is not the same as ‘the organisation’, and is always larger in scope than just ‘the organisation’. Confusing those two terms, or treating

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The importance of ‘also’

“Every business is an information business.” That was the first line of an infographic I saw this morning. And yep, no doubt about it: every business is indeed an information business. But there’s a rather important word that’s missing there: also.

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Definitions on capability

This one’s really straightforward: it’s just a follow-up to a public request on Twitter by Bizzdesign consultant Bas van Gils: basvg: I am looking for definitions of these concepts, please help: capability, capability based planning, capability increment, capability map I’ve

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