12.2 Background and Requirements

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JEDMICS (Joint Engineering Data Management Information and Control System) was conceived in the mid-1980s as the solution to the overwhelming problem of manually managing engineering data associated with weapon's system life cycle management. Originally, JEDMICS was developed as a client/server system for the U.S. Navy and the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). During the last ten years, JEDMICS has been deployed to all branches of the service (JEDMICS started out in 1989 as EDMICS and was designated as a joint system in 1993). JEDMICS is specifically designed for controlling, managing, and distributing digitized engineering data.

JEDMICS is deployed at a total of 29 army, navy, marine, air force and DLA repository sites. It is used today by more than 38,000 Department of Defense (DoD) engineers, procurement specialists, repair technicians, and others worldwide to support the war-fighters by keeping their weapon systems at higher levels of readiness. JEDMICS is now in the process of being updated to an EJB-based, multitier client/server architecture (called the OAI) to carry it beyond its 2,005 life cycles in a Web-based environment. More than 77 million engineering documents are stored in JEDMICS repositories, including the engineering data for aircraft, ships, land vehicles, and helicopters. JEDMICS engineering documents consist of drawings that may have multiple revisions. Each revision contains multiple sheets and frames that uniquely identify images, stored on magnetic disk, contained in the drawing revision. Drawing revisions may also contain associated accompanying documents, which may also have multiple revisions containing multiple sheets and frames uniquely identifying images contained in the accompanying document revision. The engineering document and its component's metadata are stored in an Oracle database. Engineering data refers to the JEDMICS document's identifying metadata stored in an Oracle database and the associated images stored on magnetic disk.

OAI's primary requirement is to provide an Open Standards?based interface for external and internal clients to manage JEDMICS engineering data. This includes C, C++, Java, and Web clients. OAI intends to use a CORBA layer that interfaces the EJB server side to support clients written in languages other than Java.

Currently, JEDMICS includes a legacy API that supports C clients and several internally developed client/server GUI applications. Only a subset of the JEDMICS functionality provided by the GUI applications is available with the API. OAI's ultimate goal is to replace the legacy API and expose all of the current JEDMICS application functionality to external and internal clients written in Java or any language supported by CORBA. Until the legacy API can be replaced, OAI is constrained to the legacy database schema. No changes may be made to the database schema, which will break the current API or the internal GUI applications.


Part IV: Applications of XML