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Architecture of the Compliance Navigator
Compliance Activator is a service based on innovative semantic analysis technology. It supports compliance managers in identifying changes in regulations which might be relevant for their work. The solution allows to connect multiple sources of structured and non-structured information with heterogenous formats (e.g., HTML, SQL, XML, RDF/RDFa, RSS, IMAP, CMIS-based data) to a semantic middleware. The latter uses the content provided by the sources to build an abstract data model from scratch. There is no need to define data models or ontologies in advance. Those emerge from the analysed data itself, which is a major advantage compared to competing solutions. Then the analysis layer runs analysis steps based on natural language programming in order to build semantic networks of the domain in focus. From then on content changes in the connected sources are being analysed automatically in arbitrary frequency and events are thrown indicating differences. These events can be used to inform users in a frontend application or to trigger workflows. In a backend component users can subscribe to certain topics and several regions for analysis like data protection, Germany and USA. These settings are used as customer-specific filters.
Data source integration and semantic analysis as core functionality of the system are based on the standard software iQser GIN Server (www.iQser.de). GIN Server is implemented in Java and uses a big data stack comprising of Hadoop, Cassandra and ElasticSearch. The front end application is available for iOS, Android and HTML 5.
Advanced features of the solution allow matching changes in external sources with enterprise-internal data like E-Mails, documents on fileservers, databases etc., which are also permanently analysed semantically. This helps identifying internal information, which is impacted by modification of external sources and probably needs to be updated. By applying machine translation of content Compliance Activator also supports semantic analysis of content originally existing in different languages. Customers can have documents in English automatically translated to German and then processed by the semantic middleware to find matching content only available in German. Translation is currently possible for German, English, French, Russian, Spanish, Portuguese and Chinese.
Consider a Compliance Activator use case from automotive industry:
A car manufacturer does business in more than 170 countries. This means it needs to comply with many different national regulations, causing tremendous effort to monitor respective legislation and its modification over time. Once the sources of regulations (e.g., law documents on public government websites, common law sentence websites) are connected to Compliance Activator the compliance managers of the enterprise can be automatically informed in case any changes occur. They then can decide about the relevance and take necessary actions.
Compliance is only one use case scenario. As content adapters and analytics are independent from industries, domains etc. the technology promises to be beneficial for many other use cases. To generate a new application for a certain domain (e.g., financial analysis), it is only necessary to connect the respective data sources of the new topic (e.g., enterprise databases like MarketLine Advantage, stock exchange websites and financial magazines) to the semantic middleware and enable it as a new subscription in the backend of the application. The new content is being processed and permanently updated as described above, with analysis results being delivered to the customer (e.g., financial analyst) as subscribed by him. Furthermore it is easy to create content adapters for formats not supported so far (many adapters are already available under Open Source license). It is also possible to enhance the analytics engine by adding specialized analysis stages.
The solution will be launched by Analytical Semantics AG, a corporation currently in the course of formation. For that reason there is no website available yet. It will go public under www.analytical-semantics.de after the corporation has been established.
The Compliance Activator is currently being implemented in globally active large enterprises (e.g., automotive) and in small and medium-sized enterprises (e.g., regional power suppliers).
There are also projects running for implementing a middleware called Enterprise Content Service Bus (ECSB), based on the described core functionality. The ECSB integrates heterogenous data sources and migrates them into a consolidated data architecture allowing parallel, yet consistent operation of legacy systems, systems to be eliminated and new systems.