CM Generations and a Vision for the Future


keep your processes running and your data safe. Look for:

·         Hot-standby disaster recovery

·         Check pointing and recovery capability

·         Ultra high reliability and availability (99.95% or < 4 hours per year)

·         Information security levels

·         Recovery from malicious/subtle data corruption

·         Proven longevity of the tool on projects older than 10 years

4G Useability
Usability will benefit from the improvements in CM functional capabilities. But beyond that, senior levels of management will begin to rely on the CM tools. The CM tools will provide the high levels of reporting and interactive navigating required to make decisions during a meeting. Look for:  extensive reporting formats (XML, spreadsheet, HTML, text, etc.); advanced interactive browsers (hyperdata, tree-browse, form browse, etc.); executive summary and interactive drill-down capabilities; and wide set of standard IDE/3rd party tool integrations.

Beyond the Fourth Generation

Beyond the 4G CM tool, we'll see the CM centric system grow into an enterprise management system. Expect to see an expansion of functionality to support a wider definition of product management, including time sheet management and analysis, budgeting, risk management, integrated quality assessment, web site management, ITIL compliant CM deployment, HR management and sales tracking, which has no other place to attach itself.

The expansion of CM tools into these areas will occur as XRAD (eXtremely RAD) capabilities are bundled with the CM capabilities. Organizations, large and small, will have the capability to rapidly define and customize their applications and processes using the same repository and tools used in their CM and product management environments.

From a usability perspective, more and more non-technical users will find that they can benefit from change control and configuration management: lawyers, accountants, media content providers, and so forth. A few simple operations from the operating system menus (save my work, show my history, show a change, yank a change, etc.) will make this possible. The CM engine will move to a more center stage position within the OS.

About the author

Joe Farah's picture Joe Farah

Joe Farah is the President and CEO of Neuma Technology and is a regular contributor to the CM Journal. Prior to co-founding Neuma in 1990 and directing the development of CM+, Joe was Director of Software Architecture and Technology at Mitel, and in the 1970s a Development Manager at Nortel (Bell-Northern Research) where he developed the Program Library System (PLS) still heavily in use by Nortel's largest projects. A software developer since the late 1960s, Joe holds a B.A.Sc. degree in Engineering Science from the University of Toronto. You can contact Joe at

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