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How Should We Use System of Systems … And Why Should We Care? Dan Cocks Lockheed Martin - MS2 July, 2006.

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Presentation on theme: "How Should We Use System of Systems … And Why Should We Care? Dan Cocks Lockheed Martin - MS2 July, 2006."— Presentation transcript:

1 How Should We Use System of Systems … And Why Should We Care? Dan Cocks Lockheed Martin - MS2 July, 2006

2 2 Context: Systems Engineering (SE) is a relatively new engineering discipline SE is characterized by a disciplined process that can be applied across a variety of problems –Telephony (early 1900s) –Missile defense (~1940s) –Software-intensive systems (~1970s) Premise: In order for the term System of Systems Engineering (SoSE) to have meaning apart from SE, there must be meaningful differences in their respective processes

3 3 Introduction: You have recently been asked to lead a Systems Engineering (SE) development project. At your first meeting, you have learned that it is actually a System of Systems (SoS) project. What does that change for you? –Additional engineering steps for your team? –Different milestones? –Different types of risks? –Different skill mix needed to staff the team? Does it tell you anything for sure?

4 4 Common SoS Characteristics: System of Systems: operational independence of individual systems managerial independence of the systems geographical distribution emergent behavior evolutionary development Many SoS definitions & characterizations look like a result of whiteboard brainstorming of lots of ideas of what systems of systems often look like.

5 5 Common Characteristics are not Always Distinguishing Characteristics SoS does not always mean geographically dispersed –some systems (not SoS) are dispersed A SoS may not always display emergent behavior –many systems (not SoS) have emergent behavior) Many fast cars are red –Color does not make them fast

6 6 SE vs. SoSE In order to have SoS Engineering (SoSE) that is distinct from SE, we must identify: –A boundary that clearly segregates SE and SoS projects and/or systems so we can tell them apart. –Engineering steps or other characteristics that apply to one and not both engineering projects so we know why we need to tell them apart.

7 7 Whats in a Name? What makes Ketchup Fancy? –More vinegar & spice? –More sugar? –More preservatives? Is Fancy used to convey meaning, or just to impress? Pictures courtesy of The Original Condiment Packet Museum

8 8 Is SoSE just Fancy SE? Does SoSE convey meaning, –Different life cycle –Different development/sustainment processes –Different development/sustainment staffing needs Or is the term used more to impress than to inform? –Bigger –Harder –More complex in some unspecified number of ways

9 9 SoSE is not Bottoms-up Engineering Some see: Systems Engineering (SE) as top-down solutions to a known mission or problem SoSE as a bottom-up discovery of new problems that can be solved using existing systems in new ways. –Hence, a Lego ® problem: What can I build from these? Pictures from

10 10 A Postulated Definition for SoS: A system of systems is a product of a system engineering process that contains one or more systems for which significant aspects of the integration and life cycle development of the component system(s) are beyond the managerial control or influence of the larger system.

11 11 Is it SE, SoSE, or FoSE*? *FoSE = Family of Systems Engineering

12 12 Is the SoSE Process Different than an SE Process? SoSE is part of SE, so there are no process steps that are unique to SoSE SoSE is a particular type of SE: –Trade studies may be fewer because large chunks of functionality are already provided in legacy systems –Risks may be greater since legacy systems have managerial independence –Development staffing, schedules, & budgets should be adjusted to reflect these differences

13 13 Summary SoSE is not a meaningful term –The engineering processes for a SoS are the same as SE processes for any other system SoS is a sub-category of systems for which component parts are systems with managerial independence –SoS programs have common risks and attributes so the balance of SE steps tend to be similar –Programs can benefit from recognizing a SoS and planning accordingly

14 14 Back-up (to Ketchup) Someone actually paid $7.00 to Google Answers to get about a page of research that concluded: –It would appear that the use of Fancy, as with many other packaging notations, is merely a marketing ploy to try to convince the consumer that one brand of seasoned tomato glop is better than another.

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