Software integration
 


Software integration is the process of linking together different computing systems and software applications physically or functionally.

The software integrator brings together discrete systems utilising a variety of techniques such as computer networking, enterprise application integration, business process management or manual programming

A system is an aggregation of subsystems cooperating so that the system is able to deliver the over-arching functionality. System integration involves integrating existing (often disparate) subsystems. The subsystems will have interfaces. Integration involves joining the subsystems together by “gluing” their interfaces together. If the interfaces don’t directly interlock, the “glue” between them can provide the required mappings. System integration is about determining the required “glue”.

System integration is also about adding value to the system, capabilities that are possible because of interactions between subsystems.

In today’s connected world, the role of system integration engineers is becoming more and more important: more and more systems are designed to connect together, both within the system under construction and to systems that are already deployed

An example of System Integration:

A web application (website) is built to perform ecommerce (i.e. sell products online), however the information about products must arrive from the Enterprise Resource Planning System (i.e Accounting, Stock Management and Sales Order Processing System).  Also the Sales Orders from the ecommerce website need to be sent back to the ERP system for processing to allow products to be shipped to the customer and the accounting system to be updated with these online sales. 

In this example, the Web Application would be integrated with the ERP system firstly to get the products to sell on line (i.e. all this information to be displayed on the website about a product) and then when a sale is made send the sales data back to the ERP system.

Corporate computer infrastructures typically consist of an assortment of operating environments. Although there are many reasons to upgrade and bring these diverse systems to a single operating environment, the reality is that the costs are prohibitive. Current Directions utilizes powerful integration techniques to protect your information systems and infrastructure investments while taking advantage of the latest technology to implement successful shop-floor data collection solutions.

Mixed computing environments present unique challenges of mating the new and the old without sacrificing performance. In order for shop-floor data collection systems to be successful, they require that state-of-the-art technology be integrated with existing systems to accomplish real time responses to the operators. Current Directions optimizes performance by carefully analyzing the existing infrastructure and then choosing, developing and applying the right combinations of technology necessary to satisfy the needs of the data collection application.

 

Integration with an IP-based network

The WiMAX Forum has proposed an architecture that defines how a WiMAX network can be connected with an IP based core network, which is typically chosen by operators that serve as Internet Service Providers (ISP); Nevertheless the WiMAX BS provide seamless integration capabilities with other types of architectures as with packet switched Mobile Networks.

The WiMAX forum proposal defines a number of components, plus some of the interconnections (or reference points) between these, labeled R1 to R5 and R8:

  • SS/MS: the Subscriber Station/Mobile Station
  • ASN: the Access Service Network
  • BS: Base station, part of the ASN
  • ASN-GW: the ASN Gateway, part of the ASN
  • CSN: the Connectivity Service Network
  • HA: Home Agent, part of the CSN
  • AAA: Authentication, Authorization and Accounting Server, part of the CSN
  • NAP: a Network Access Provider
  • NSP: a Network Service Provider

It is important to note that the functional architecture can be designed into various hardware configurations rather than fixed configurations. For example, the architecture is flexible enough to allow remote/mobile stations of varying scale and functionality and Base Stations of varying size - e.g. femto, pico, and mini BS as well as macros.