Fwd: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...

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nigel green

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Feb 27, 2009, 10:02:18 AM2/27/09
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---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Christopher Bird <seab...@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, Feb 27, 2009 at 2:16 PM
Subject: Re: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...
To: Carl Bate <carl.bat...@googlemail.com>
Cc: David Hunt <david...@btinternet.com>, jschle...@computer.org, nigel green <nigelp...@googlemail.com>, david...@btopenworld.com, Chris Yapp <chris...@homail.co.uk>, Greg Smith <gregm...@btinternet.com>, Mal Postings <maldi...@gmail.com>, Simon Tait <sand...@btinternet.com>, Sally Bean <sa...@sallybean.com>, Roy Grubb <royg...@gandanet.com.hk>, Adrian Apthorp <adr...@apthorpia.com>


Carl, apologies you will get this twice. My default is not to use reply all - and I didn't the first time I sent this.

While VPEC-T provides the main pillars/dimensions for discussion/discovery there are a whole bunch (yeah that is a Texan technical term) of cross-cutting items, each of which has relevance to the dimensions.

Forgive me for taking a slightly trite view of this, but I am thinking in terms of rows/columns. No, not Zachman with the rows and columns reversed, nor a relational database, but simply a table where we have the VPEC-T dimensions as the column heads and these cross-cutting concerns as rows. The intersecting cells then represent the cross cutting concern in the context of the dimension.

So "Meaning" has different meaning (oh dear, I need to do something about big M Meaning and little m meaning here...) depending on whether you are looking in terms of Values or Content.

I don't know how many of these cross-cutting concerns there are, nor do I know exactly when/if they are all relevant. However, I think that as we use VPEC-T, some experiences/best practices will help us flesh them out. Essentially adding to the consultants' armories without necessarily being part of the descriptive method. Maybe in the current vernaular these cross cutting concerns represent metadata or tags that we might want to use to decorate each of the Dimensions.

We have all used favorite techniques, story telling approaches, scenarios, diagrams, personality, blackmail and probably a host of other things when facilitating sessions. Getting out what is needed into a suitable form that everyone can sign up to is what we have to keep doing. So, we should figure out what our own best decorators are when applying them on real projects. I anticipate a universe of these growing up - and we in the community should be choosing from them - one size/one set of tags does not suit all occasions. There may come a time when a decorator becomes a first class member of the framework, but we should resist that - the elegance of VPEC-T is its simplicity.

C

On Fri, Feb 27, 2009 at 3:02 AM, Carl Bate <carl.bat...@googlemail.com> wrote:
Hi guys - just wanted to add something to the meaning discussion...

I'd really welcome developing the concept of AMMMs (autonomous meaning
making machines) with the group. The idea here is around information
relativity - that is, while we might agree on agreed standards for
physicality for all useful purposes of an event (date, time,
location), what we make a 'happening' mean as people (autonomous
participants in an information system), we each can only know. I can't
see into your brain and know what you make something _mean_!. Same for
policies and content of course - the same policy can be interpreted
differently. The concept might also extend to discrete pieces of
software, in so much that a 'meaning' made is as a result of the code
interpreting data. I think VPEC-T is a natural relative framework. V
and T for example affect each of our personal 'meaning filters'. I've
started to write about AMMMs and hope to share a short paper soon. All
thoughts welcome!

best
carl

On Fri, Feb 27, 2009 at 7:47 AM, David Hunt <david...@btinternet.com> wrote:
> Fine by me as well
>
>
>
> David
>
>
>
> From: John Schlesinger [mailto:jschle...@computer.org]
> Sent: 27 February 2009 06:14
> To: nigel green; John Schlesinger; david...@btopenworld.com
> Cc: Carl Bate; Chris Yapp; Greg Smith; Mal Postings; Simon Tait; Sally Bean;
> Roy Grubb; Adrian Apthorp; Christopher Bird
> Subject: Re: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...
>
>
>
> Fine by me
>
> John
> Mobile 07794 353 356
>
> ________________________________
>
> From: nigel green
> Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2009 04:24:47 +0000
> To: <jschle...@computer.org>; <david...@btopenworld.com>
> Subject: Re: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...
>
> Does anyone mund if I make this thread of emails public on the VPEC-T Group
> and summarise the discussion on my blog? John and David?
> n
>
> On Thu, Feb 26, 2009 at 2:47 PM, John Schlesinger
> <jschle...@computer.org> wrote:
>
> I don't think we disagree. We can use phenomenology to justify VPEC-T - the
> set of events and content associated with a domain via policy is the
> phenomenon of the system. The understanding of what that means is contextual
> and part of the value systems interacting. The system may think it is
> authorising while the user may think it dispensing funds for instance.
> John
>
> John
> Mobile 07794 353 356
>
> ________________________________
>
> From: david...@btopenworld.com
> Date: Thu, 26 Feb 2009 09:46:57 +0000 (GMT)
> To: John F Schlesinger<jschle...@computer.org>; nigel
> green<nigelp...@googlemail.com>; David Hunt<david...@btinternet.com>;
> Carl Bate<carl.bat...@googlemail.com>; Chris
> Yapp<chris...@hotmail.co.uk>; Greg Smith<gregm...@btinternet.com>; Mal
> Postings<maldi...@gmail.com>; SIMON TAIT<sand...@btinternet.com>; Sally
> Bean<sa...@sallybean.com>; Roy Grubb<royg...@gandanet.com.hk>; Adrian
> Apthorp<adr...@apthorpia.com>; Christopher Bird<seab...@gmail.com>
>
> Subject: Re: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...
>
> Guys
>
>
>
> Agree on this in terms of our inability to convey meaning ... at the risk of
> alienating John   Error! Filename not specified. this is precisley the tack
> that my paper for the EAC conference takes ... I an leaning towards
> Husserl/Heidegger on this where they differentiate our ability to explain
> phenonema and our ability to understand phenomena .. meaning comes from our
> "world context" classic example is the hammer ... science and modelling can
> expalin the properties of a hammer but is our view of worldhood that allows
> us to understand what a hammer is for ... think this applies to data and
> services and forms the basis of good old Ciborra (you just lnew i would get
> that on in as well ...).
>
>
>
> David
>
>
>
> ________________________________
>
> From: John F Schlesinger <jschle...@computer.org>
> To: nigel green <nigelp...@googlemail.com>; David Hunt
> <david...@btinternet.com>; Carl Bate <carl.bat...@googlemail.com>;
> Chris Yapp <chris...@hotmail.co.uk>; Greg Smith
> <gregm...@btinternet.com>; Mal Postings <maldi...@gmail.com>; SIMON
> TAIT <sand...@btinternet.com>; Sally Bean <sa...@sallybean.com>; Roy Grubb
> <royg...@gandanet.com.hk>; Adrian Apthorp <adr...@apthorpia.com>;
> Christopher Bird <seab...@gmail.com>
> Sent: Thursday, 26 February, 2009 9:26:51 AM
> Subject: Re: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...
>
> Dear Nigel,
>
> meaning is a meta-subject I think in the context of VPEC-T. Meaning is the
> 'sky hook' by which humans enable communication. This is a topic the
> philosophers have debated at some length. Quine and Putnam argue for the
> 'indeterminacy of translation' which is the core of the problem of meaning
> in the process of communication. I have always maintained that the secret to
> integration is semantics (a posh word for meaning). The only way I know to
> make one system communcate with another is to separate the syntax of the
> interaction (protocol and formats) from the semantics (meaning of the data).
> The whole process can only work if there is an 'a priori' agreement that the
> event in the sending system is a cause of the event in the receiving system
> (again we rely on the philosophers here - David Hume told us how to manage
> causes and events). This comes from the business. If the business event
> recorded in the first system requires a consequence in the second record
> keeping system, then we have our a priori agreement that the first causes
> the second. That is why business events are a necessary condition for
> integration and why I like VPEC-T.
>
> Yours,
>
>
>
> John Schlesinger
> Home Phone +44 20 7833 5930
> Mobile Phone +44 7794 353 356
>
>
>
>
>
> ________________________________
>
> From: nigel green <nigelp...@googlemail.com>
> To: David Hunt <david...@btinternet.com>; John Schlesinger
> <jschle...@computer.org>; Carl Bate <carl.bat...@googlemail.com>;
> Chris Yapp <chris...@hotmail.co.uk>; Greg Smith
> <gregm...@btinternet.com>; Mal Postings <maldi...@gmail.com>; SIMON
> TAIT <sand...@btinternet.com>; Sally Bean <sa...@sallybean.com>; Roy Grubb
> <royg...@gandanet.com.hk>; Adrian Apthorp <adr...@apthorpia.com>;
> Christopher Bird <seab...@gmail.com>
> Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2009 8:41:47 AM
> Subject: Re: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...
>
> Richard Veryard's point (on the LinkedIn Enterprise-as-a-System group)
> about  'meaning' is interesting as it actually spans all other dimensions
> (and as such don't see it as 'part of' VPEC-T) but is probably most catered
> for in Values (in the PoV sense) and Content (in the meta sense). But, of
> course, as Chris Yapp pointed out before, we don't properly explore the 'I'
> of information systems with 5D and that's what led to the thinking around
> CADS (2 reverse order posts here)
>
> Maybe RV's right though, maybe you could say  'meaning' is a missing
> hidden-super-dimension - but I think I would still keep it to one side in a
> 5D lens analysis with a regular business participants other than is covered
> as we discuss the over 5.
>
> So I say we do cover meaning through the VPEC-T discourse itself but accept
> that more work would need to be done around meaning (and process for that
> matter) to establish a rigorous methodology for IS which VPEC-T/5D Lens
> isn't. In the same way a SWOT isn't for business.
>
> Gosh I wish I had more time to think about this - I feel some new insights
> are just around the corner!
> n.
>
> --
> Mobile: +44 789 1150 181
> Twitter: http://twitter.com/taoofit
>
> http://www.LIThandbook.com
> http://servicefab.blogspot.com
>
>
> --
> Mobile: +44 789 1150 181
> Twitter: http://twitter.com/taoofit
>
> http://www.LIThandbook.com
> http://servicefab.blogspot.com



--
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http://businessanditarchitecture.blogspot.com

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http://seabirdskitchen.blogspot.com

Twitter id http://twitter.com/seabird20




--
Mobile: +44 789 1150 181
Twitter: http://twitter.com/taoofit

http://www.LIThandbook.com
http://servicefab.blogspot.com

nigel green

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Feb 27, 2009, 10:36:08 AM2/27/09
to vpe...@googlegroups.com

This is a post at a LinkedIn group (you have to be a member to post a comment I believe) :

Richard Veryard  wrote:

"As a radical alternative to the Kipling set of questions (who-what-where-when-why-how) favoured by John Zachman, the VPEC-T set of questions (values, policies, events, content, trust) seems to give us an intriguingly different way of investigating (engaging with) an enterprise.

I have no direct experience with VPEC-T, but what I've read about it makes a lot of sense. So I thought it would be useful to dig a bit deeper into the systems theory underlying VPEC-T, not as a challenge but merely in the spirit of taking things forward.

My concern about any list of questions is that it easily generates the illusion of completeness. So I wonder whether VPEC-T is supposed to be complete in any sense; if so, is there some grounding in systems theory that supports this particular selection of questions? (And if not, does it matter as long as it works?".

My simple answer WRT Systems Thinking would be along the lines already posted  LiT site:

"For those of you who’ve read LiT you’ll know the authors are fans of System Thinking . It was always in the back of our minds as we developed the VPEC-T framework and described Externalization and Adoption Engineering. Our primary focus with LiT is the improvement of the communication between business and IT – not to introduce a comprehensive set of techniques for executing transformations. But what we’re finding is that some practitioners of VPEC-T are going on to consider how to apply native Systems Thinking techniques such analysis of feedback loops, stocks and flows, adopters/adapters and extended System Thinking techniques such as CATWOE (definition courtesy creatingminds.org) from Peter Checkland ’s Soft Systems Methodology .This relationship but separation between LiT concepts and Systems Thinking helps in a couple of ways. The separation helps prevent VPEC-T from being seen as a methodology for transformation rather than as a framework for communication – its enduring purpose. However, it seems the common root in Systems Thinking creates a useful bridge between Information System planning /development and organizational/process change techniques such as Systems Dynamics and Six Sigma .

My personal experience is that I’ve had more meaningful and innovative discussions with business transformation experts because of this shared foundation"

So, my point would be that I don't claim that VPEC-T has deep 'Systems Theory' as a base rather that it shares roots with Systems Thinking and it seems to provide a useful gateway to Systems Thinking discussion without the 'academic baggage' for non-academic business folk.

PEG

unread,
Feb 27, 2009, 7:31:06 PM2/27/09
to VPEC-T
In a world where where we're rapidly moving to deploying
salesforce.com or netsuite rather than siebel or SAP, a lot of the
rigor provided by academic systems theory is becoming unwanted
baggage. How much rigor should you apply to a monthly contract for a
commoditized service (config, not customize)? Some companies are
using this to deliver the bulk of their platform (via something like
netsuite), bolting differentiating solutions as required.

Or put another way, IT is no longer an engineering problem. Zachman &
formal, academic systems theory are an albatross which we need to
throw off if we don't want enterprise IT to become irrelevant.

http://www.slideshare.net/peg/the-value-in-enterprise-architecture

Light-weight, user and business centric approaches (such as VPEC-T)
provide us with a way to remain relevant and a more dynamic and light
weight business world.

On Feb 28, 2:36 am, nigel green <nigelpsgr...@googlemail.com> wrote:
>  *This is a post at a LinkedIn group (you have to be a member to post a
> comment I believe) :
> * Richard Veryard
> <http://www.linkedin.com/profile?viewProfile=&key=593180&authToken=XT2...>wrote:
>
> *"As a radical alternative to the Kipling set of questions
> (who-what-where-when-why-how) favoured by John Zachman, the VPEC-T set of
> questions (values, policies, events, content, trust) seems to give us an
> intriguingly different way of investigating (engaging with) an enterprise.
>
> I have no direct experience with VPEC-T, but what I've read about it makes a
> lot of sense. So I thought it would be useful to dig a bit deeper into the
> systems theory underlying VPEC-T, not as a challenge but merely in the
> spirit of taking things forward.
>
> My concern about any list of questions is that it easily generates the
> illusion of completeness. So I wonder whether VPEC-T is supposed to be
> complete in any sense; if so, is there some grounding in systems theory that
> supports this particular selection of questions? (And if not, does it matter
> as long as it works?".
> *
>
> My simple answer WRT Systems Thinking would be along the lines already
> posted  LiT site <http://www.lithandbook.com/?p=41>:
>
> *"For those of you who’ve read LiT you’ll know the authors are fans of System
> Thinking <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Systems_thinking> . It was always in
> the back of our minds as we developed the VPEC-T framework and described
> Externalization and Adoption Engineering. Our primary focus with LiT is the
> improvement of the communication between business and IT – not to introduce
> a comprehensive set of techniques for executing transformations. But what
> we’re finding is that some practitioners of VPEC-T are going on to consider
> how to apply native Systems Thinking techniques such analysis of feedback
> loops, stocks and flows, adopters/adapters and extended System Thinking
> techniques such as CATWOE (definition courtesy
> creatingminds.org)<http://creatingminds.org/tools/catwoe.htm>from
> Peter
> Checkland ’s <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Checkland> Soft Systems
> Methodology <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soft_systems> .This relationship
> but separation between LiT concepts and Systems Thinking helps in a couple
> of ways. The separation helps prevent VPEC-T from being seen as a
> methodology for transformation rather than as a framework for communication
> – its enduring purpose. However, it seems the common root in Systems
> Thinking creates a useful bridge between Information System planning
> /development and organizational/process change techniques such as Systems
> Dynamics <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Systems_Dynamics> and Six
> Sigma<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_sigma>.
> *
>
> *My personal experience is that I’ve had more meaningful and innovative
> discussions with business transformation experts because of this shared
> foundation"*
>
> So, my point would be that I don't claim that VPEC-T has deep 'Systems
> Theory' as a base rather that it shares roots with Systems Thinking and it
> seems to provide a useful gateway to Systems Thinking discussion without the
> 'academic baggage' for non-academic business folk.
>
> n.
>
> *
> *
>
> --
> Mobile: +44 789 1150 181
> Twitter:http://twitter.com/taoofit
>
> http://www.LIThandbook.comhttp://servicefab.blogspot.com

Richard Veryard

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Mar 1, 2009, 6:14:49 PM3/1/09
to VPEC-T
I asked where "Meaning" fits into the VPEC-T framework. There are lots
of good comments here, and I'd like to reply to them in detail. But I
thought I'd start by posting a framework I developed some years ago,
which perhaps goes some way to explaining what I'm talking about, and
why I think it's important.

My starting point was a quote from Kolb.

"In resolving the dialectic conflicts between value and fact, meaning
and relevance, integrity is the master value … wisdom the protector of
fact and meaning, justice the protector of fact and relevance, courage
the protector of relevance and value, and love the protector of value
and meaning. These … virtues … instruct us to create, not adjust."

And here you will find a slideshare presentation.

http://demandingchange.blogspot.com/2009/02/reframing.html
Message has been deleted

nigelp...@googlemail.com

unread,
Mar 1, 2009, 6:43:28 PM3/1/09
to VPEC-T
Richard/All,

please take a look at my summary post here.
http://bit.ly/ZXyLa

and the c-map here.

 http://bit.ly/493ud

nigel

Sally Bean

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Mar 2, 2009, 4:48:30 AM3/2/09
to vpe...@googlegroups.com
Just catching up with this conversation. I thought Richard's challenge was a
very interesting one, and I agree it's important.

I'm struck by the lack of mention of roles and people in the conversation so
far.

Nigel, I remember asking you where these fitted into VPEC-T when we first
talked about it. You had an answer for me (can't remember exactly what it
was), but I do think it's striking that the only people-related concept on
your map is the VPEC-T practitioner plus a reference to user-centric
approaches. Do you need to add in a 'community' concept - you can have
communities that share a practice, share a culture, or share a set of
semantics ?.

Sally

-----Original Message-----
From: vpe...@googlegroups.com [mailto:vpe...@googlegroups.com] On Behalf Of
nigelp...@googlemail.com
Sent: 01 March 2009 23:40
To: VPEC-T
Subject: VPEC-T Re: Fwd: The Richard Veryard discussion continues...


Richard,

please take a look at my summary post here.http://
servicefab.blogspot.com/2009/03/question-of-meaning.html

and the c-map here.

http://bit.ly/493ud

nigel

On Mar 1, 11:14 pm, Richard Veryard <goo...@veryard.com> wrote:

nigel green

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Mar 2, 2009, 6:08:18 AM3/2/09
to vpe...@googlegroups.com
Here's what I replied to your comment on the SF blog:
-----
@cybersal: I must admit I was always thinking 'community' as I drew the map. The reason the Use Patterns are highlighted is because they are to be created by communities and used by communities to convey 'meaning' by showing that 'meaning' depends on the context under which you apply VPEC-T. 

Within the context of VPEC-T itself communities/groups are associated with 'Values' and 'Trust' in the same way individuals are. I don't differentiate between a person or a group in this sense.

-----
We asy much more about this in LiT - actually we talk a lot about adoption and value systems (of communities and networks (value networks). My concept amp wasn't trying to recapture the whole train-of-thought behind LiT (again) rather just to note the thoughts over the past few days.

Kurt and I did a lot of work around Value Networks when build VI SixD and I came to conclude that meaning is always ulimately 'in the eye of the beholder' and that a single event may have different meaning across a Value Network ( and this can be appropriate and useful). However, a degree of shared semantics and protocol are absolutely vital and so Policies are importntant to get right and keep simple. We could make similar observations about each dimension. That's why 'meaning', in John's words, is a Sky Hook for VPEC-T.

Nigel

John Schlesinger

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Mar 3, 2009, 1:35:38 AM3/3/09
to vpe...@googlegroups.com
Just to emphasize that I completely agree with Nigel that meaning is in the eye of the beholder. The 'sky hook' is a semantic agreement around causality - that event causes this to happen. So for me causality is what holds the hook in the sky.
John

John
Mobile 07794 353 356


From: nigel green
Date: Mon, 2 Mar 2009 11:08:18 +0000
To: <vpe...@googlegroups.com>

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