Today´s post is provides an overview of what TOGAF is and what it stands for. It does so with a short series of pictures which each address an important aspect of TOGAF.
TOGAF Timeline, History, and Versions
TOGAF was first published in 1995 by The Open Group. Since then, new versions have been released every few years. In the recent past, the frequency of new releases has lowered. The latest version of TOGAF, which is version 9.2, was released in 2018.
The TOGAF Architecture Development Method (ADM)
The TOGAF Architecture Development Method provides a stepwise approach to architecture development projects. While the method itself is fixed phases, The Open Group clearly emphasizes that it can be used in different agile contexts. Therefore, it provides several possibilities of how an architecture project can cycle through the different phases and repeat them depending on the need and maturity of the output.
The TOGAF Architecture Layers
The TOGAF Architecture layers build today´s basis for many architectural approaches and ways of thinking. The layers that TOGAF provides are rather simplistic and limited to 3 main layers. Those are the business layer, information systems layer, and the technology layer. In addition, the information systems layer has two sub-layers, which are the applications layer and the data layer. Today´s enterprise architecture best practices usually amend the TOGAF layers by additional layers or put more emphasis on particular aspects.
TOGAF Content Metamodel
The TOGAF content metamodel provides a model to sort different enterprise architecture outputs into a broader model. Just as the ADM, it build on the TOGAF architecture layers and adds a more visionary and strategic category on top, as well as a more operational and realizing category at the bottom to it.
TOGAF Enterprise Continuum
The Enterprise Continuum is a concept to determine the reusability of an enterprise architecture artifact of general output. It is a scale on which generic and reusable artifacts are placed on the left side, while very specific and non-reusable artifacts would be placed on the right side. It is not a real and tangible file ordering system, but is rather meant to explain what type of artifacts can exist and if a reusage would be possible.
TOGAF Views and Viewpoints
In the context of artifacts and enterprise architecture work, TOGAF talks often about views and viewpoints. While an artifact provides a particular view on something, a viewpoint is a generic position from which something can be looked at. For example, one could develop an application architecture view from its Marketing domain and another application architecture view from its Sales domain. While both artifacts would have the same viewpoint – which is the application architecture – each artifact would provide a different view.