The TOGAF Enterprise Continuum
It is simplest to think of the Enterprise Continuum as a 'virtual repository' of all the architecture assets - models, Patterns, architecture descriptions and other artifacts - that exist both within the enterprise and in the IT industry at large, and that the enterprise considers itself to have available for the development of architectures for the enterprise.
Examples of 'assets within the enterprise' are the deliverables of previous architecture work that are available for re-use.
Examples of 'assets in the IT industry at large' are the wide variety of industry reference models and architecture Patterns that exist and that are continually emerging, including those that are:
- Highly generic, such as TOGAF's own Technical Reference Model (TRM)
- Specific to certain aspects of IT, such as a web services architecture, or a generic manageability architecture
- Specific to certain types of information processing, such as e-Commerce or supply chain management
- Specific to certain vertical industries; for example, the models generated by vertical consortia such as TMF (in the Telecommunications sector), ARTS (Retail) or POSC (Petrotechnical)
Enterprise Architect's support for the Enterprise Continuum is provided by the Enterprise Continuum diagram and the corresponding Diagram Toolbox page. The starter model consists of an interface to the TOGAF Enterprise Continuum.
When you double-click on an Architecture Continuum or Solution Continuum element, an Enterprise Continuum diagram displays. The Diagram Toolbox page provides the Architecture Building Block and Solutions Building Block elements and the appropriate relationship connectors.