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Business Mobile Agent Networks

Objective

This project will investigate the application of mobile computation models of business processes to the configuration, management and execution of distributed workflow systems for inter-enterprise B2B e-business. B-MAN aims at developing and demonstrating new business models and best business practices, exploiting European strengths such as mobile systems and software for business process modelling and integration.

Objectives:
-Specify a migration strategy and business model for distributed workflow management based on an in-depth analysis user needs and enterprise requirement;
-Develop a formal model of ownership and authentication management in an agent- based architecture for distributed workflow management;
- Achieve the complete implementation of an infrastructure for workflow management, the so-called Business Operating System (BOS);
-Develop the B-MAN Business Desktop Metaphor (BDM), which supports dynamic process configuration from a variety of terminal devices;
- Evaluate the effectiveness of distributed workflow in two substantial pilot applications
-Support the uptake and exploitation of the B-MAN concepts.

Work description:
The B-MAN project aims to develop a scaled-up, industrial strength platform, but also addresses open problems and has longer term research objectives. Therefore the structure of the workplan for the B-MAN project does not conform to conventional software engineering development paradigms. The method of trying to ensure success is by combining elements of both 'waterfall' and 'spiral' project management methods. The waterfall element is included by the breakdown of the project into three distinct phases, as follows:
- Phase 1: Foundations (research basis and business orientation);
- Phase 2: Development (build, integrate and test infrastructure) and;
- Phase 3: Evaluation (deploys and evaluates).
The phases are structured to follow the project's logical life cycle. However, the development of the infrastructure represents the core of the project, and continues throughout the project lifetime. Thus in Phase 1 of the project, research results are intended to inform development, but development tests can also inform what is feasible in terms of research and business goals. Similarly, Phase 3 of the project intends to apply the output of development, but initial tests can inform redesign and improved development, and lead to improved output to test. In this way, B-MAN aims to create a "spiral" of research and development, as Phase 1 can continue to contribute requirements, models and specifications to Phase 2; while Phase 2 can contribute results and direction, which can focus research. A similar relationship holds between Phase 2 and Phase 3. There are three Workpackages in Phase 1, and one Workpackage in each of Phases 2 and 3, making a total of five technical Workpackages. There are also two Workpackages for Management, Dissemination and Exploitation continuing throughout all three phases.

Milestones:
1. Kick-off Meeting: to clarify the research basis and business orientation;
2. Milestone meeting at the end of month 4 to state the evolution of the project;
3. Milestone and review meeting (month 12): information on the technical progress and financial issues;
4. Development, integration and test infrastructure so there will be a review meeting (month 24);
5. Final Project Review.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

ATOS ORIGIN SA
Address
Calle De Albarracin 25
28037 Madrid
Spain

Participants (5)

IMPERIAL COLLEGE OF SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND MEDICINE
United Kingdom
Address
South Kensington Campus
SW7 2AZ London
INESC PORTO - INSTITUTO DE ENGENHARIA DE SISTEMAS E COMPUTADORES DO PORTO
Portugal
Address
Campus Da Feup, Rua Dr. Roberto Frias 378
4200-465 Porto
LIMA & REZENDE, LIMITADA
Portugal
Address
Lugar De Manhoce
Arrifana
PARAREDE INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY-PRODUCAO DE SOFTWARE E HARDWARE S.A
Portugal
Address
Avenue Jose Malhoa 21
1070-157 Lisboa
TECHNOPOLE QUIMPER-CORNOUAILLE
France
Address
2 Rue Bernard Guillemot
29000 Quimper