Rule Engine: The Inevitable

It was a hurricane task coming to an end when we finished the framework of our product. It was a project that we started two years and was able to finish with almost all the features that we thought of. This was a framework on top of which all business layer will be developed. The great thing was any new business layer(BL) development will not take much time to develop as they will all follow a similar pattern.

This thought of similar pattern really strike me. If all BL will follow similar pattern why we need to program every time why we can’t write a rule engine which will read rules written by developer and then execute methods on the framework. My intention was

  1. Developer now need to express BL methods in the form of XML.
  2. A tool can be developed which will allow business analyst or external project manager to write such rules or customize existing BL methods.

When I presented this to my CEO he had reservation and he said the following

  1. Developer will need to learn a new language instead of C#.
  2. The Rule Engine will be very complex and will require lot of development and maintenance effort.

Although he rejected my idea but he agreed that the product need a Rule Engine as the product caters to a market where business rules keeps on changing and embedding these in code really makes the product rigid. It can become a USP of the product as it will allow us to market product where we can claim “Change Business Rule without any cost…”

Recently I joined a leading BRMS vendor. Before joining this firm I really started thinking whats the future of the entire domain and why we required such thing. What I came with a statement

“In next ten year every Enterprise software system should be Rule Engine based .”

The reason for my above belief

  1. Business Rules change are inevitable.
  2. Enterprise system are based on Business Rules.
  3. Change in Business Rule causes triggering of Change Management which involves cost and more important time.
  4. The factors above may lead to work with old system which may be inefficient.
  5. Having a Rule Engine based system where Business Rules are captured outside an enterprise system will empowered enterprises to go ahead with efficient process improvement without thinking of time and cost.
  6. Enterprise system’s will invoke the rules using the Rule Engine based on certain well defined interface.
  7. This will Enterprise’s IT department to manage all Business Rules in a single repository in more efficient manner.
  8. The IT department can generate all sort of analytics about the Business Rules currently in use or Business Rules which are no longer is in practice or history of Business Rules within an enterprise.
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3 Responses

  1. monic.com – The Future Now!, Monic Fly Lines

    Useful, thank you!

  2. Copernicus Software

    Useful, thank you!

  3. Glamour Modeling

    hey great stuff

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