Why this site?

Following on from Why EA?  its now over 10+ years since I’ve been using EA (V3.5 2002).  It is now a much more powerful tool with a lot more functionality and I’m inspired to explore some of these capabilities. Not least I expect to learn stuff that may be useful to me, or at least intellectually interesting if not directly related to my day job.

My main use of EA to date has been in the roles of a:

  • User  – developing product specifications, managing requirements and developing processes
  • Administrator – setting up and managing EA projects as well as managing/training teams of users
  • Software developer – designing/integrating tools/coding including developing EA Extensions

I find (and observe) that with most tools once a user is over the initial learning curve there is little increased use of features.  Probably due to a lack of need and/or awareness. I can recall occassions when I have seen a colleague using a feature of a tool unknown to me and immediately gone about using it and it is at these times I feel I should be spending more time learning.

If as part of the tool induction process a user attends (and puts the effort into) a good tailored training course they are likely to benefit.  At this point I could have a big rant about organisations who don’t invest in training their staff on the tools they are asking them to use – seems such as waste both for the users and I’m sure financially for the company – end of potential big rant!

Personally I know I have tended to use the same stuff in EA and there is a lot more that I should know about.  Also there is a lot that I’ll probably never need to use in my day job that could be of interest.  As with many topics the more you learn about something the more you realise that you don’t know.

So I aim to dedicate some time to exploring EA further very much in an experimental mode – to check out areas of the product, what they do and how they may be used.  I’m not committing to do anything other than explore and hopefully find some interesting and useful stuff.  Clearly where I spend my time will be based on my interests so there will probably remain areas I just don’t touch.

Rather than keep the results of these experiments in my own personal notes, and hence only useful to me, I thought I’d make a bit of an effort to share information I find – hence this site. In doing this I’ll probably include notes on stuff I do know how to do and my experiences of doing it. At times some of my writings will be in note form and hence may not make sense and in time this will be resolved.

BUT just a reminder (a word of caution) – what I do, the why I do it the way and the tools/environment I use is very individual to my particular needs and may not match what you are trying to do so beware of taking any of my information on face value and applying in any other situation.

So whats the plan:

I’m going to spend some time pulling together some experiements and as time permits document them on this site. I’m not promising to provide the answers to your problems (Sparx provide support, their forum and community site do that), but if you

  • Are curious about EA and what it can do – me too – 1st job will be to trawl through the latest product and check out what I may like to explore
  • Are looking for some examples on how to use EA – I intend to produce simple but working examples to test stuff
  • Want to see how to extend EAs functionalityonce again will produce working examples – although nothing too big (get enough of that during the day!)

then perhaps some of this stuff I capture in this notebook will be interesting to you.