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Vision of Emergent Software One Step Closer to Reality: Initial Software-Cluster Projects Completed

The final presentation of the Software-Cluster projects "Foundations of Emergent Software" and "Process Innovation in the Software Industry" took place in Kaiserslautern/Germany on June 18th, 2013.

The projects with a total value of 31 million euro and a consortium of 29 partners from industry and research are the first two projects that have been completed successfully as part of the leading-edge cluster competition of the German federal government.

The Software-Cluster integrated projects "Foundations of Emergent Software" (EMERGENT) and "Process Innovation in the Software Industry" (SWINNG) began in June 2010 and after three years have now come to its successful conclusion. Around 30 core results were presented to the public and representatives of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the executive agency DLR.

The EMERGENT project researched and developed the foundations of “emergent software,” a new class of distributed, innovative information systems that emerge across companies through the interaction of individual components and services on the Internet, thus exhibiting a qualitatively higher performance.
To realize this vision, progress in the areas of interoperability, adaptivity, user interfacse, and IT security of software systems are needed. This challenge has been addressed by the partners of the project.

The following results were presented, among others:

- Adaptation and Management of Service-Based Business Processes
Thanks to modern software and cloud computing, the market for software components and services is growing. In future, it will also be possible to adaptively integrate smaller providers into business processes through emergent software. This can be automated via automatic service selection and adaptive processes. This was demonstrated on the case of a reordering process.

- Secure Portrayal of Real World Events in Emergent Software
As a basic technology, sensor networks initially enable the "Internet of Things" and are an essential part of emergent software, since dynamic real-time integration of physical events into business processes is only possible through their use. Efficient methods were developed in the project in order to ensure a consistent level of security, privacy and service quality for all components involved in business processes.

- Event-Based Monitoring of Distributed Systems in Real Time:
Due to the high dynamics of emergent software systems, a complete test of these systems cannot be performed a priori. A solution was developed in the project where expectations and quality criteria are formulated in contracts and tested during runtime. Corrective action can thus be taken in a timely manner when needed.

A detailed description of these and other results is available at

The project “Process Innovation in the Software Industry” (SWINNG) aimed to promote the competitiveness of software companies through the development of business methods for the management of innovation projects.

This included research on business models and software development methodologies, governance and compliance challenges and Living Labs application scenarios. Also, solutions for the specific tasks that cluster organisations are facing were developed – e.g. tackling the skills shortage, technology transfer, cluster marketing or cluster evaluation.

The following results were presented, among others:

- Business Model Wizard: The Business Model Wizard is an IT tool for the standardised description and monitoring of business models. A company can thus configure and analyse its business model, compare it with reference models, and—based on feedback data—optimise it or simulate the impact of changes. At the same time, semantic technologies and visual analytic methods support the analysis.The integration with the ARIS process modelling tool makes it possible to operationalise the strategic models to the business process level.

- Concept for Training and Recruitment of Skilled Workers: Following a needs analysis, a comprehensive concept regarding skills and knowledge transfer, tailored qualification offers, and a quality seal for education were developed in the Software Cluster. The Qualification Board, a governing body consisting of representatives from the private sector and academia, was established to advance and coordinate measures to improve skills and the transfer of knowledge.

A detailed description of these and other results is available at

The following Software-Cluster partners were involved in one or both of the projects: 1&1 Internet AG, ConWeaver GmbH, CyberForum e.V., German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), DFKI Innovative Retail Laboratory, eyeled GmbH, Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research (IGD), Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Software Engineering (IESE), Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Mathematics (ITWM), IHK Darmstadt Service GmbH, IMC AG, Insiders Technologies GmbH, intelligent views gmbh, IT FOR WORK e.V., John Deere European Technology Innovation Center, Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT), KOBIL Systems GmbH, Kompetenzzentrum Informatik Saarland, mineway GmbH, proALPHA Software AG, Saarland University. SAP AG, SEEBURGER AG, SIEDA GmbH, Sirrix AG, SmartFactoryKL e.V., Software AG, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Technische Universität Kaiserslautern,

The findings from both projects now completed form the basis for the corresponding research and development in the still ongoing projects “Innovative Services in the Internet of the Future” (since September 2011) which researches and tests the sales of enterprise software services in the cloud, and “Software Innovation for the Digital Enterprise” (since February 2013) that has set out to create an infrastructure for the launch of business software services in the cloud that can be combined in new ways.

Bernd Hartmann | idw
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