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Fact Oriented Modeling with FCO-IM: Capturing Business Semantics in Data Models with Fully Communication Oriented Information Modeling

Book Description

This book offers a complete basic course in Fully Communication Oriented Information Modeling (FCO-IM), a Fact Oriented Modeling (FOM) data modeling technique. The book is suitable for self-study by beginner FCO-IM modelers, whether or not experienced in other modeling techniques. An elaborate case study is used as illustration throughout the book.

The book also illustrates how data models in other techniques can be derived from an elementary FCO-IM model. The context of fact oriented modeling is given as well, and perspectives on information modeling indicate related areas of application and further reading.

Fact Oriented Modeling methods (like FCO-IM) have three major advantages over other data modeling techniques:
  • FCO-IM captures business semantics. The meaning of facts is captured by incorporating into the model expressions of concrete facts in clear sentences, which are understood by both domain experts and information modelers.
  • FCO-IM includes a detailed working procedure that tells you exactly how to make a data model. Many techniques are clear about what is to be modeled, but few offer a detailed set of guidelines and checks that tell you how to draw up, check and validate your model.
FCO-IM focuses on elementary facts, avoiding premature clustering of facts (in entities) but also avoiding considering only incomplete fragments of facts (attributes). From an elementary model, data models in other techniques can be automatically derived (ERM, UML, Data Vault, Star Schema, and Relational and NoSQL databases).

Table of Contents

  1. Foreword By Guido Bakema
  2. Chapter 1 Information Modeling in Context
    1. 1.1 Business Information and Communication Systems
    2. 1.2 Views on Business Communication
      1. 1.2.1 Information Model
      2. 1.2.2 Business Vocabulary
      3. 1.2.3 Graphical User Interface (GUI)
      4. 1.2.4 Business Process Model
      5. 1.2.5 Business Rules
      6. 1.2.6 Use Cases
      7. 1.2.7 Summary of Views
    3. 1.3 Fact Oriented Modeling (FOM)
      1. 1.3.1 Hallmarks of FOM Techniques
      2. 1.3.2 What Makes FCO-IM Special?
    4. 1.4 Why This Book?
  3. Chapter 2 Serviceton Music Theater
    1. 2.1 Description of the Domain
    2. 2.2 The Information System Development Perspective
      1. 2.2.1 Serviceton Music Theater Business Process Model
      2. 2.2.2 Serviceton Music Theater Use Case Diagram and Brief Description
      3. 2.2.3 Serviceton Music Theater Graphical User Interface
      4. 2.2.4 Serviceton Music Theater Information Model
      5. 2.2.5 Serviceton Music Theater Business Rules
  4. Chapter 3 How to Model the Facts
    1. 3.1 The FCO-IM Information Modeling Procedure
    2. 3.2 Collecting: Finding or Drawing up Examples of Facts
    3. 3.3 Verbalizing: Putting the Concrete Examples Into Words
      1. 3.3.1 Why Verbalize?
      2. 3.3.2 Good Verbalizations for Serviceton
      3. 3.3.3 Guidelines for Verbalizing
    4. 3.4 Sorting
      1. 3.4.1 Verbalizations for Serviceton
      2. 3.4.2 Sorting: Typing and Naming
    5. 3.5 Reading Back Fact Expressions From an FCO-IM Diagram
      1. 3.5.1 Fact, Fact Type, Role, Fact Expression, Fact Expression Type
      2. 3.5.2 Tuple, Population
      3. 3.5.3 Object, Object Type, Object Expression, Object Expression Type
      4. 3.5.4 Label, Label Type
      5. 3.5.5 Reading Back the Complete Fact Expressions
    6. 3.6 Analyzing
      1. 3.6.1 Analyzing Fact Type ‘Show’
      2. 3.6.2 Rule of Thumb and Procedure for Analyzing
      3. 3.6.3 Analyzing Fact Type ‘Performance Features Show’
      4. 3.6.4 Analyzing Fact Type ‘Performance PRICE’
      5. 3.6.5 Summary of Analyzing the other Performance Schedule Fact Types
      6. 3.6.6 Dos and Don’ts When Analyzing
      7. 3.6.7 An Object Expression Must be a Connected Sentence Part
  5. Chapter 4 How to Keep the Facts Sound Using Constraints
    1. 4.1 Introduction to Business Rules and Constraints
      1. 4.1.1 Stating Business Rules and Constraints
    2. 4.2 Uniqueness Constraints (UCs)
      1. 4.2.1 Illustrations of how Uniqueness Constraints are Determined
      2. 4.2.2 Procedure to Find all UCs in an Information Model
      3. 4.2.3 Procedure Applied to Fact Types With Three Roles
      4. 4.2.4 Summary of Determining UCs for the Remaining FTs of the Performance Schedule
    3. 4.3 Totality Constraints (TCs)
      1. 4.3.1 Illustrations of How Totality Constraints are Determined
      2. 4.3.2 Procedure to Find all TCs in an Information Model
      3. 4.3.3 Summary of Determining TCs for the Remaining FTs of the Performance Schedule
    4. 4.4 Value Constraints (VCs)
      1. 4.4.1 Value Constraint or Domain List?
      2. 4.4.2 Procedure to Find all VCs in an Information Model
      3. 4.4.3 Summary of Determining VCs for the Remaining FTs of the Performance Schedule
    5. 4.5 Other Constraints
      1. 4.5.1 Totality Constraint on two out of Many Roles
      2. 4.5.2 Subset Constraint Between two Roles
      3. 4.5.3 Equality Constraint Between two or More Roles
      4. 4.5.4 Cardinality Constraint With Value Requirement
      5. 4.5.5 Uniqueness Constraint Between two Fact Types
      6. 4.5.6 Circular Constraint
      7. 4.5.7 Dynamic Constraint
      8. 4.5.8 Deontic Totality Constraint on a Role
  6. Chapter 5 How to Check your Model and get it Approved
    1. 5.1 Verbalizations are Crucial to Verify and Validate the Model
    2. 5.2 Form Rules for an FCO-IM Diagram
      1. 5.2.1 Naming Conventions
      2. 5.2.2 Requirements for Fact Expression Types and Object Expression Types
    3. 5.3 Is the model really elementary?
      1. 5.3.1 N Rule
      2. 5.3.2 N-1 Rule
      3. 5.3.3 When to Perform the N Rule and N-1 Rule Tests
    4. 5.4 Was any Object Type Overlooked?
      1. 5.4.1 Example of Overlooked Object Type in Serviceton Theater
      2. 5.4.2 General Pattern Revealing an Overlooked Object Type
      3. 5.4.3 When to Perform the Overlooked Object Type Test and add a new Object Type
  7. Chapter 6 Advanced Topics
    1. 6.1 Freedom of Choice: Alternative Ways to Model the Same Fact Expressions
      1. 6.1.1 Different Way of Sorting: Different Table Structures
      2. 6.1.2 General Advice on Modeling: as Data Instead of Metadata
      3. 6.1.3 Different Way of Analyzing: Extra Object Type
    2. 6.2 Some Things are Special: Introduction to Subtypes
      1. 6.2.1 Declarative and Derivable Subtypes
      2. 6.2.2 Difference Between Subtypes and ‘Ordinary’ Object Types
    3. 6.3 A Window on Further Modeling Power
  8. Chapter 7 Model Transformations
    1. 7.1 Transformation of an FCO-IM IGD Into a Relational Database Schema
      1. 7.1.1 What is a Relational Database, Really?
      2. 7.1.2 Derivation of a Relational Schema: Indicating Tables in the IGD
      3. 7.1.3 Derivation of a Relational Schema: Group, Lexicalize, Reduce and Convert
    2. 7.2 Transformation of an FCO-IM IGD Into an Entity Relationship Diagram
      1. 7.2.1 Step 1
      2. 7.2.2 Step 2
    3. 7.3 Transformation of an FCO-IM IGD Into Other Modeling Techniques
  9. Chapter 8 Perspectives on Information Modeling
    1. 8.1 Business Support
    2. 8.2 Business Processes, Business Rules
    3. 8.3 Semantic Web (Machine Readability, AI, Rules, Ontology)
    4. 8.4 Interoperability (Ontologies, Standards, Diversity)
    5. 8.5 Quality of Data, Quality of Information, Data Governance
    6. 8.6 Business Intelligence, Data Warehousing
    7. 8.7 Big Data, NoSQL, Analytics
    8. 8.8 Links with Other Modeling Schools
    9. 8.9 System Generation, Model-Based Development, and Evolutionary Systems
    10. 8.10 Alternative Uses of FOM
  10. APPENDIX A Serviceton Music Theater Complete FCO-IM Information Model
    1. A1 IGDs
      1. A1.1 IGD Schedule
      2. A1.2 IGD Customer
      3. A1.3 IGD Reservation Request
      4. A1.4 IGD Tickets
    2. A2 Constraints
      1. A2.1 Uniqueness Constraint Determination for all Fact Types With two or More Roles
      2. A2.2 Totality Constraint Determination for all Object Types
      3. A2.3 Value Constraint Determination for all Label Types
      4. A2.4 Subtypes
      5. A2.5 Other Constraints
    3. A3: Tables of Business Rules
  11. APPENDIX B Further Reading
    1. B1 On FCO-IM
    2. B2 On Other Fact Oriented Modeling Techniques
    3. B3 On Other Information Modeling Techniques
    4. B4 On Other Related Fields of Interest
  12. Index