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A Business Analysis Of The Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model

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Autor:  anton  23 April 2011
Tags:  Business,  Analysis,  Object,  Oriented,  Hypermedia,  Design
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A Business Analysis of the Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model

This discourse will provide a brief overview of the Object Oriented Hypermedia design model and the four-step process involved in the development of the model. This section will provide an explanation for each step in the process. Then we will discuss the past, present and future business uses of the model. This will explore the importance of the model in business applications that are conducted through the Internet. We will also provide details about the compatibility of the model and compare the model to similar applications such as HDM and OOHM. Finally, we will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the model. Including that navigational design of the model and the costly overhead and training involved in implementing the application.

There will be several types of sources used during the course of this discussion. Most of these sources will be essays and articles written by Rossi and Schwabe who invented the Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Method. In addition there will be a myriad of article written by computer programming specialists and researchers.

Brief overview of the Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model

The Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model uses "abstraction and composition devices in an object oriented framework to allow a concise description of complex information items, and on the other hand, allow the specification of complex navigation patterns and interface transformations." (Rossi and Schwabe 1998) OOHDM is developed through a four step process which includes; conceptual design, navigational design, abstract interference design and implementation. (Rossi, et al)

Conceptual Design Phase During the conceptual design phase the model of the application domain is created using object oriented modeling principles. The creation of the application domain determines the discourse of the application. There are two types of objects that are represented in this phase: the objects that provide computational support and the objects that will be perceived as nodes in the navigational design phase. (Rossi et al)

The navigational design phase is very important to the success of any hypermedia application because navigation is what separates hypermedia design from other applications. Navigation allows users to navigate a space created of objects. During this phase transformations are specified which determine how navigation will operate

The third phase is the abstract interface design phase specifies interface objects that are responsible for mediating user interaction with navigation objects. The interface model specifies which interface objects the user will perceive; which interface objects will activate navigation; how multimedia interface objects will be synchronized; and the interface transformations that will take place. (Rossi, et al)

During the final phase of implementation the mapping is created for the objects in the conceptual, navigational and abstract interface phases. All of the proceeding phases are done independently of the implementation platform. (Rossi et al)

Past Present and Future Business Uses

Past Uses

Theodor Holm Nelson created the Hypermedia Design Model in the mid 60Ð¥s. He hoped to create a system by which the reading of different documents was not subject to sequence. (Hypermedia 2001, |1) In the past the Hypermedia model was used to simply create web-based applications. The primary use of Hypermedia was to reduce file transfer times and compile information into a format that would be accessible to people over the World Wide Web. Hypermedia also helped to create networks and early navigation systems for businesses.

The OOHDM model was created to simplify the hypermedia model and to address some of the problems presented by the model. OOHDM did this by creating a navigational system and navigational patterns that allow businesses to provide customers with valuable content over the Internet.

Present Uses

The current uses of OOHDM involve creating e-commerce solutions. E-commerce is fast becoming popular as a way of delivering of business processes and applications over the Internet. An increasing number of organizations require the performance of web-based solutions with functionality to complete commercial transactions over the World Wide Web. These transactions include the acceptance of credit cards so that customers can make purchases over the net and the ability to provide customers will valuable content information about the business. (Abrah, Fons, Pastor 2000, 2)

A well-designed application is important because business owners understand that how a Web site functions will either create repeat customers or discourage customers from visiting the site. It is essential that a Web site is easy to navigate and that it functions in an efficient manner. It is also important for a business to be able to correct problems with the system quickly, which will prevent the loss of customers and profits. As a result of the demands that are placed on business to have an efficient Web site a precise software production process is needed. (Abrah, Fons, Pastor 2000, 2) The OOHDM process provides the stability needed to accommodate an e-commerce site.

OOHDM is also used to improve the functions of Web information systems through the use of design patterns, which make Web sites easier to navigate. OOHDM is used in this area because it provides for a clear separation of conceptual, navigational and interface designs. These distinctions are imperative because it allows programmers to concentrate on the hypermedia metaphor of Web Information Systems. (Rossi, Schwabe, Lyardet 1999, 3)

Future Uses

OOHDM will continue to be used to aid business with e-commerce solutions and structuring Web Information Systems. It is evident that the method will continue to grow and more research will be done to make the method even more efficient. This efficiency would make the system less expensive to maintain and make Web Pages even easier to navigate. In addition there will inevitably be new applications that are discovered and used instead of OOHDM.


User's hardware requirements for text- and graphics-based hypermedia is very modest, and most new PCs and Macs have sufficient speed to play video clips. Conversely there is a problem that is created when the model is used on a network. This is because the application is extremely complex and needs large amounts of bandwidth to operate properly. The fact that the infrastructure of bandwidth solutions is improving on a consistent basis does no negate the fact that application can outstrip the network bandwidth. (Tissue, 4)

Experts believe that bandwidth constraints will most likely continue for many years. In addition the limitations are used to place sensible restrictions on the nature of the material that can be successfully dispersed over the World Wide Web. It is important to remember that bandwidth considerations also include the end users network connections, which may produce a variety of file-transfer speeds. (Tissue, 4) The OOHDM application itself can be implemented on most hypermedia-supported platform. (Ashman, Bieber, Kukkonen 1999, 7)


The following comparison of OOHDM with other approaches such as HDM, ADM, OOHM, OOWS and OOH is based on conceptual design and navigational design and interface design. The purpose of this comparison is to clearly explain the differences that the Object Oriented Design Method has with these other applications. This comparison is taken from the article, "Building E-Commerce Applications from Object-Oriented Conceptual Models"

During the conceptual design phase, the Hypermedia Design Model approach is based on E-R diagrams and does not utilize the Object Oriented model. The Araneus Design Model (ADM) is not based on a conceptual model and depends on the navigational model. The Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model uses an Object Oriented conceptual model based on modifications of the Unified Modeling Language these modifications do not permit the objects of the application to offer services to the end user. The OOWS and OOH-Method use the Object Oriented Method as a conceptual model. (Abrah, Fons, Pastor 2000)

In the navigational design phase, all of these applications introduce node and link concepts as the fundamental structures for the explanation of hypermedia systems. Conversely, the explanation is considered by the approaches in different ways. These approaches to the explanations can be separated into two categories. The Hypermedia Design Model and the Araneus Design model represent the first category. The second category includes the OOWS, OOHDM and OOH-Methods. (Abrah, et al)

The first category does not make any distinction between the conceptual and navigational models, but instead they represent navigational characteristics in a conceptual model based on E-R design. On the other hand the second category distinguishes between an Object Oriented conceptual model and a navigational model, which regulates the observation of each user of the information system. (Abrah, et al)

Within the second group, there is also a difference in the navigational unit in OOWS and OOHDM (navigational context and node, respectively), which is an element, made up of several groups from the conceptual model. While, in OOH-Method, the navigational unit is a class from the conceptual model (navigational class). Additionally, a building block (navigational target) is used to group classes. This building block does not imply that there be any necessary navigation; it is simply used for the organizational purposes of the method. This notion is also defined in Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model application as navigational context. (Abrah, et al)

The final aspect of navigational design involves the dynamic behavior of the various models. Neither Hypermedia Design Model nor Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model makes any declaration about the likelihood of including services in their systems. The only dynamic behaviors that these methods offer are queries to databases and generation of dynamic pages. (Abrah, et al)

When multivaluated attributes are defined, the Araneus Design Model allows the addition of the service that must be performed. The OOWS and OOH-Method allow the inclusion of the services of every class that will be utilized in the navigational diagram of the methods. In OOWS, the needed services that can be included in the navigation classes are only those services that the user agent is permitted to activate, according to the conceptual model specification, but in the OOH-Method it is necessary to indicate which services can be executed using service links. (Abrah, et al)

The approaches above mentioned deal with interface design in different ways. The Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model uses an interface model that designs Abstract Data Views that are used to describe the objects that are apparent to the user. In the Araneus Design Model, the interface is left un-designed, but style sheets can be used to generate HTML Hypermedia Designed Method pages. (Abrah, et al)


Navigational Design

The primary strength of the OOHDM is the navigational design of the application. The navigational design of this method provides for simple navigation of Web Information Systems. The navigational design of this application has patterns, which include: Set based navigation, news, landmark, active reference and node context. These patterns organize information, grow with the system, customize the representation of objects and keep a record of user selections. (Rossi, Schwabe, Lyardet 1999)

Addresses problems created by the HDM method

Another strength of the OOHDM is that the application addresses problems created by HDM. The HDM system involves integrating very complex information into a single platform that is easily accessible. OOHDM separates this complex information through abstraction and composition to make this information accessible and easy to navigate. (Rossi and Schwabe 1998)

In addition, Rossi writes that, "the first hypermedia applications, which were distributed through CD ROMs, were thought of as unchangeable applications that were not meant to be maintained or modified for new releases, possibly as a consequence of physical properties of their support media." (Rossi et al) Rossi goes on the say that, the growth of technology and the Internet has made necessary the need for applications that can be modified, improved with new services, new navigation and interface features. (Rossi et al) Rossi concludes that the OOHDM system allows for the constant changes that are needed to meet the needs of the growing pool of Internet users.

Well Researched

The final strength presented by the model is that is has been well researched and studied. The creators of the application Schwabe and Rossi tested the application repetitively while creating the method. The amount of research that is conducted on a method is important because it allows others to see how the application can be improved and the methods used to ensure that the application would operate appropriately.


Overhead Cost

According to an article by Michael Lang, in Information Science, a major weakness of the OOHDM is that it is an extremely complex system that requires a large amount of overhead to maintain. This type of application requires constant upgrades that surpass the amount of upgrades that other applications require. In addition the implementation and maintenance of this type of application requires specialized training that can be very costly to attain. (Lang 2002, 885)

Complex Data Storage

Furthermore, there is a complex process involved in the storage, processing and presentation of multimedia data. Traditionally information systems applications only managed simple text and numerical data. More contemporary hypermedia methods must mange audio, graphics, video objects, and images, and compound media. These more complicated data formats make it difficult for systems programmers, database administrators and interface designers to create an Object Oriented Hypermedia Design. (Lang, 884)

Lack of Consensus

In addition to the aforementioned there is also a lack of consensus as to the methodology that should be used in the development of Hypermedia systems. Some experts support the Object Oriented approach while others believe that the better approach is RMM. Lang Writes,

"Development teams typically involve people from a broad range of backgrounds, often with little in common. Of course, skills diversity is not unique to hypermedia systems development, - many conventional projects, and particularly large ones, necessitate the integration of various knowledge domains. However, participants in hypermedia systems development tend to hail from disciplines that are not just diverse but also discrete, such as systems analysis, graphic design, marketing, and media production. These disciplines each have their own very different vocational training paths, with little crossover. Inevitably, this leads to communication problems and cultural conflicts."(Lang, 884)


This discourse began with brief overview of the Object Oriented Hypermedia design model and the four-step process involved in the development of the model. We discovered that that these steps included conceptual design, navigational design, abstract interface and implementation. We discovered that the model is rather complex in design and execution.

Then we discussed the past, present and future business uses of the model. Our investigation found that in the past hypermedia had been used to simply compile information and make it accessible and that the early hypermedia system provided for navigation and networking for businesses.

The present business uses of the model are e-commerce and Web Information Systems. Our research found that these business uses are essential if businesses desire to survive as part of the new economy. We concluded that in the future the model will still be used in e-commerce and web based solution we also believe that the application will be better researched and create even better navigation of Web sites.

We also explored the compatibility of the model and discovered that the model could be implemented onto most hypermedia platform. In addition we compared the model to similar applications such as HDM, ADM and OOHM. Finally we will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the model. We found that the application provides for superior navigation and resolves some of the problems presented by the HDM. The weaknesses of the model included the complexity of the application and the expense of implementing and maintaining the technology.

As we have discovers the Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model is essential to the success of the Internet specifically in business uses and navigation of Web sites. It is my sincere desire that this paper has aided you in understanding the complex world of the Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model.

Works Cited

Abrah, S., Fons, J., Pastor, O. "Building E-Commerce Applications from Object-Oriented Conceptual Models" 2000.

Ashman H., Bieber, M., Kukkonen H.. "Hypertext Functionality: introduction to the special issue". Journal of Digital Information. 1999. Volume 1 Issue 4.

Hypermedia. 2001

Lang, Michael. "Hypermedia Systems Development: Do We Really Need New Methods?" Informing Science. 2002. (Online).

Rossi, Gustavo and Schwabe, Daniel, "An Object Oriented Approach to Web-Based Application Design", Theory and Practice of Object Systems 4(4), 1998. Wiley and Sons, New York, ISSN 1074-3224)

Rossi, G., Lyardet, F., Schwabe, D. "Improving Web information systems with navigational patterns". Proc. 8th Int. World Wide Web Conf. (1999) pp. 589_600.

The Object Oriented Hypermedia Design Model. 2001

Tissue, Brian. "Practical Hypermedia Design for the World-Wide Web".

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