The design and implementation of the SEAU procedure management system
Stephens, Gary (1992) The design and implementation of the SEAU procedure management system. Master of Science thesis, Dublin City University.
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An emerging requirement across a range of industries is to be able to quickly and efficiently automate an organisation's official, and also more ad-hoc, policies and procedures. A Procedure Management System is a system which assists users in carrying out these procedures.
The purpose of the research presented in this thesis has been to:
• define a low-level model for the representation of procedures
• construct a platform-independent prototype Procedure Management System (PMS) (the SEAU system) which supports this model
• experiment with the use of this PMS for representing and
enacting procedures defined using other high-level models
• assess the suitability of the model as a low-level model for the representation of procedures.
We begin by explaining what a Procedure Management System is and by examining some existing Procedure Management Systems and the models used in them for procedure representation.
We then discuss some important issues in the design of a Procedure Management System, particularly the models used for representing procedures. A number of guidelines are outlined which should be followed in the design of a model for representing procedure and for the design of a prototype Procedure Management System.
A low-level rule-based model for the representation of procedures which may be used as the basis for a PMS is then presented. Also given are some important features of high-level procedure specification models and it is shown how these might be implemented in a PMS.
The architecture of the SEAU (Submission, Execution, Allocation, User- Interface) PMS, and the individual components which make up this system, are described. The criteria that must be conformed to by programs which are to be used with the SEAU system are also given, and the way in which the system assists in the execution of sub-procedures is described.
The use of the SEAU system for the implementation of example
procedures, defined using a number of different high-level models, is then examined. It is explained how some of the features of these models may be implemented using the low-level model used in the SEAU system, and features of the example procedures which caused some difficulty during implementation are highlighted.
Finally, we summarise the conclusions reached as a result of this research and outline some possible future research directions, including ways in which the SEAU system might be enhanced.
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