Surprisingly TOGAF is another IT acronym which abbreviates The Open Group Architecture Framework.
Now in itself that doesn't really explain anything, and you could argue that even the full title explains very little. This post looks to clarify some on the words being abbreviated and provide a brief synopsis of what it all actually means, providing you with a high level understanding.
So what is TOG? Well as they succinctly describe themselves on their website;
The Open Group is a vendor-neutral and technology-neutral
consortium, whose vision of Boundaryless Information Flow™
will enable access to integrated information, within and among enterprises,
based on open standards and global interoperability.
Brilliant! We can all pack up and go home. That complete describes what The Open Group is in a clear, digestable format that allows IT leaders and decision makers to accept the need for standards based arhitecture. It doesn't? Thought not.
What this really boils down to is that The Open Group are a group of people and businesses who work together to deliver standards within IT, be they global certification, policies or interoperability rules and guidelines. The Open Group members can combine to form independent working groups or forums. One such form is the Architecture Forum which work to develop the Architecture Framework.
So what is an Architecture Framework? Now this really is a good question and I suggest really read what is an Enterprise Architecture Framework?
The addition of the word enterprise should help you to focus a little on what this is really all about, and it isn't just about applications, infrastrucuture, data or service. It is in fact about all of those and the business. Enterprise Architecture covers a magnitude of disciplines and skills and can encompass many aspects of the business including geographically distant divisions, agencies or departments.
The Architecture Framework describes an industry agreed approach for tackling the problem of aligning IT across your business, ensuring ongoing management of requirements, governance and assurance, and change management. It will provide a 'tool' that enables the ongoing design and deployment of IT services that meet agreed standards, use approved building blocks and ensure the ongoing success and growth of a business.
So, you now have a high level understadning of what TOGAF actually is, and no doubt a hunger to learn more. Well over the coming weeks/months/years I will be adding more plain talking blog posts that will hopefully give you more detail, but not add to the confusion.