Data-Oriented Design

This text uses the Martin [1990] version of Information Engineering to illustrate data-oriented design. The result of data-oriented analysis – entity-relationship diagrams, data flow diagrams, CRUD matrices, and so on – is translated into screen designs, production database designs, action diagrams, procedural structures, and security plans. Compared to other approaches, data-oriented design has a strong emphasis on security, recovery, and audit controls, relating each to data and processes in the application.

In this chapter, you will learn about the concepts and terminologies for data-oriented design, analyzing data and defining system controls, and the action diagram. The action diagram shows the processing details for an application in a structured format, which can be translated into programs and modules. You will also learn about menu structure, dialogue flow, and hardware and software installation and testing.

6. Automated Support Tools for Data-Oriented Design

Many CASE tools support aspects of data oriented design (see Table 10-7). Two specifically support IE as discussed in this chapter. The IE CASE tools are Information Engineering Workbench4 (lEW) by Knowledgeware, Inc., an4 Information Engineering Facility (lEF) by Texas Instruments, Inc. Both products receive high marks of approval and satisfaction from the user communities. Because of their cost, both products are used by mostly large companies. The products offer enterprise analysis in addition to application analysis, design, and construction (i.e., coding). Both IEF and lEW work on PCs, networks, and mainframes. 

A typical IEF installation could include a mainframe version with the centralized repository. Users check out portions of a repository to work with on a PC. Then, when the work is complete and checked on the PC, it is merged with the mainframe repository for official storage. When the merge takes place, the checked-out items are revalidated for consistency with all mainframe repository definitions. Both products offer automatic SQL schema generation for data. IEF offers automatic code generation for Cobol with imbedded SQL, and can interface to generators for other languages.

TABLE 10-6 Installation Plan Items
Due Date    Responsible  Item
Sam, Jr. Pgmr. 
Sam, Jr. Pgmr.
Sam, Jr. Pgmr. 
Sam, Jr. Pgmr. 
Sam, Jr. Pgmr. 
Sam, Jr. Pgmr. 
Sam, Jr. Pgmr. 
Sam, Jr. Pgmr. 
 DBA, Sam
ML, Union Contractor 
Sam, Vic's LAN Administrator 
LAN Administrator 
Mary, Sam 
Order equipment and software
Order cable and connectors  
Plan cable, printer, PC, server locations
Install and test file server and one PC  
Install and test impact printers 
Install and test bar code reader and printer
Install and test Carbon Copy (network version)
Install and test Word Perfect (network version?)
Install and test Norton Utilities (network version) 
Install and test Fastback
Install and test Lotus (network version)
Install and test SAM (network version) 
Install and test SQL DBMS (network version) 
Install and test cable
Install test application and verify SQL DBMS
Move 2 PCs, bar code reader, and 3 printers to permanent locations and test
Move remaining three PCs to permanent locations and test
Remove CASE tools from PCs, remove single user software from PCs and file server 

lEW and IEF differ in important ways. lEW is more flexible in that it does not require the completion of any matrices or diagrams. However, to take advantage of the interdiagram evaluation software that assesses completeness and syntactic consistency, all matrices and diagrams are required during a given phase. This means that you might not have the diagrams or analyses from planning, but you still can create levels of ERDs within the analysis tool. Similarly, you might not have the analysis tool, so action diagrams can be created directly within the design tool. IEF's strength is that its rigorous adherence to Information Engineering has led to substantive intelligence checking within the software. Both tools easily manage and sort large matrices that result from several of the analyses. 

The weakness of the tools differs for each tool. lEW is primarily a PC-based product that can be unstable when used for large projects. lEW also provides DFDs, not PDFDs, and is not a pure data methodology tool. A strength of lEW is that Knowledgeware was an IBM partner in its repository definition; as a result, lEW is compatible with AD-cycle software from IBM.

IEF's strength is also its biggest weakness. IEF requires completion of every table, matrix, and diagram at this time. 5 The level of intelligent checking that can be performed is higher than with most other CASE products, but the requirement to complete every table, and so on does not make sense for all projects. TI has recognized the severity of this shortcoming and is increasing the flexibility of the product without compromising its capabilities. The mainframe version of IEF uses DB/2 for repository management and can generate C, Cobol, DB/2, SQL, and other languages' codes.

Table 10-7 Automated Tool Support for Data-Oriented Methodologies
Product  Company Technique
Analyst/Designer Toolkit  Yourdon, Inc.
New York, NY
Entity-Relationship Diagram (ERD) 
Bachman  Bachman Info Systems Cambridge, MA Bachman ERD
Bachman IDMS Schema
Bachman DB2 Relational
Schema and Physical Diagram
CorVision Cortex Corp. Waltham, MA  Action Diagram
Menu Designer 
Deft  Deft Ontario, Canada  ERD
Form/Report Painters
Jackson Structured Design (JSD)-Initial Model 
Design/1  Arthur Anderson, Inc. Chicago,IL  ERD
ER-Designer  Chen & Assoc. Baton Rouge, LA  ERD
Schema generation 
IEF Texas Instruments Dallas, TX  Action Diagram
Code Generation
Data Structure Diagram
Dialog Flow Diagram
Entity Hierarchy
Process Data Flow Diagram
Process Hierarchy Screen Painter
lEW, ADW (PS/2 Version)  Knowledgeware Atlanta, GA  Action diagram
Code generation
Database diagram
Schema Generation
Screen layout
System Engineer  LBMS Houston, TX  ERD DFD Menu Dialog Transaction Dialog Entity Life History Module Sequence DB2, ADABAS, IDMS, Oracle Table Diagram
Teamwork CADRE Tech. Inc. Providence, RI  Control Flow
Code Generation
Process Activation table
Program Design Tools
Testing Software
vs Designer  Visual Software Inc. Santa Clara, CA  Process flow diagram Action Diagram