The ArchiMate 3.0 Relations Table…

…has serious, and many, errors. According to my personal analysis, 152 valid relations are missing, and potentially 2941 relations that are in that table shouldn’t be, if the text of the standard is to be believed or if we use some common sense. Here is why I believe that, and how I did calculate the table myself (code included).

The ArchiMate standard’s metamodel consists of:

  1. A set of element types (e.g. Business Object, Node, Assessment, Capability) in a number of domains (Core, Motivation, Strategy, Implementation)
  2. A set of relation types (e.g. Access, Serving, Realization, Assignment)
  3. A core set of relations defined from element to element (e.g. Application Function — Accesses — Data Object, Technology Interface — Realizes — Requirement)
  4. A set of derived relations (more about these below)
  5. Relations to/from relations (as of ArchiMate 3)

We ignore 5 for now.

3 and 4 together fill the the table in appendix B of the standard. Formally, this table defines all the allowed relations between the elements in ArchiMate in an actual model. These relations are all are equally valid. Note: that there is a ‘core set of relations’ and a ‘core domain’ within ArchiMate may confuse people. These are fully separate concepts.

How the table of allowed relations is calculated is not open to the public, and that way can also not completely be inferred from the text of the standard. What is clear, though, is that there are errors in the table. This post is about an attempt to create a calculation, and an comparison of this alternative to what is actually in the official table. Running ahead of things, 152 relations (including core ones) turned out to be missing from ArchiMate’s official table and 2941 relations in the official table are suspect and  many clearly illegal.

The resulting Excel Spreadsheet and Python program I share under BSD license (so totally free), for all the world to see my feeble first steps at programming in Python :-). And VBA.

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Posted in Discussing ArchiMate, Tooling | 6 Comments

Another Milestone

It has been almost a month ago that it happened (but I had other things one my mind), but it did happen. This blog passed the 300,000 views mark and also the 100,000 viewers mark. Thank you all for reading, because being read is what a writer craves most 🙂


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Who’s in Charge? (Layers? What Layers! — 2)

ArchiMate 3, at first glance, looks like a very orthodox IT-oriented enterprise architecture modeling langage. It can show how the business is supported (‘service-oriented’) by applications which are supported (‘service-oriented’) by infrastructure. This has been the Core of ArchiMate’s view on the enterprise since the beginning. Physical processes and materials have been added to ‘infrastructure’ (which has been renamed to ‘technology’) but even with that we still are in effect talking about a classic BAT-stack (Business–Application—Technology).

From ArchiMate 3 on, however, this strict layering has been loosened in an important way. Continue reading

Posted in Using ArchiMate | Tagged | 12 Comments

What is wrong with this picture?

Time for another — this time very short — educational quiz post. Look at the following diagram (in the Mastering ArchiMate colour scheme). Is this OK?

whatiswrongspecialisation30 Continue reading

Posted in Discussing ArchiMate, Using ArchiMate | Tagged | 13 Comments

ArchiMate 3.0 metamodel PDF

I’ve created a PDF that  you can print two sided (and laminate if you like) to have easy access to the ArchiMate 3 metamodel. Continue reading

Posted in Mastering ArchiMate, Using ArchiMate | Tagged | 12 Comments

An AchiMate 3 Map (Layers? What Layers! — 1)

ArchiMate 3 is setup with 5-6 layers (Strategy, Business, Application, Technology/Physical, Implementation) and 4 aspects: (Passive and Active) Structure, Behaviour and Motivation. Quoting the standard:

ArchiMate3-OriginalMap.jpeg Continue reading

Posted in Discussing ArchiMate | Tagged | 2 Comments

Follow-up to “Is ArchiMate Open?”

A (concluding) piece about the licensing issues surrounding ArchiMate has been published over on Chess and the Art of Enterprise Architecture. Published there, because it is not so much about ArchiMate modelling or the language, but about legal issues and questions about ‘openness’. Just mentioning it here for those that are interested in such matters.

The previous article was Is ArchiMate Open? Not Really.

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