Popkin unveils modeling tool

Many agencies are discovering that the enterprise architecture models that depict their information technology and business operations can serve as the grist for the business case documents now required for budget approval.

Popkin Software, an architecture modeling vendor with several government customers, recently announced a new tool to help agencies crank out the business case documents. Officially called Exhibit 300s, they are now required by the Office of Management and Budget.

Popkin's new tool is called SA/Information Publisher. It works by taking the architecture models that an agency creates using Popkin's Systems Architect modeling tool and presenting relevant portions of the models in an Extensible Markup Language format based on OMB's requirements. Although the tool does not fully automate the creation of the reports — users still have to customize publishing templates for their own situations — it should save considerable time compared to the previous, mostly manual process, according to Jan Popkin, chief executive officer of Popkin Software.

"Before, [agencies] had to handcraft this themselves or do simple reports, and then piece all the reports together into various views, such as a technical view, a high-level view," he said. "Now, once they build the templates, they can push a button and generate reports for lots of different purposes, like the OMB requirements or for sharing the information on a Web site."

For now, agencies can only get their hands on SA/Information Publisher by buying the software with supporting consulting services from Popkin. In August, the publishing tool will be available directly to customers who only want the software.

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