Develop Software Portal Hosting, Distribution and Access Infrastructure Integrated with Nimbis Services
On this project, Nimbis Services Inc. provided a software portal hosting, distribution and access infrastructure integrated with Nimbis Services current brokerage service that broadened the use of digital analysis computing or model based simulation by tier 2-4 supply chain manufacturers. The goal was to encourage development of new model based simulations applications and domain specific portals by entrepreneurs and increase accessibility/use of this new infrastructure capability by supply chain users. This was accomplished by providing a new commercial service capability built on Nimbis Services existing core brokerage technology with a user supportive environment for hosting domain specific portals, developing/hosting emerging model based simulation applications, and e-commerce distribution system with a special focus on underserved periodic and experimental industry user communities.
- Digital Manufacturing Portal Storefront
Created an end-user friendly digital manufacturing ecommerce storefront ecosystem that enabled target customers to rapidly access and perform digital analysis computing using a SaaS model. In collaboration with the portal developers, Nimbis utilized their application user scenarios, capability objectives, and performance metrics to prioritize the features and capabilities that were implemented. Nimbis also leveraged their existing relationships with independent software vendors, high performance computing suppliers, non-profit manufacturing centers, and DoD supply chain companies. A spiral software development process was applied.
- Domain Portal Toolkit
Established a portal development environment that enabled vendors, universities, and entrepreneurs to easily develop their own digital manufacturing domain specific portal implementations as plug-ins to the Nimbis hosting service. In this task, Nimbis also developed the domain portal hosting tools. The implementation included extensions to the existing Nimbis Cloud Portal architecture including: a new framework for hosted application domain web portals, a domain portal storefront, and tools for developing, monitoring, and tuning virtual clusters machine images/instances for domain portal application back ends. The proposed toolkits and frameworks would be built using open source software packages and rely heavily on integrated service oriented architectures and web services technologies.
- Portal Ecosystem Prototype
Built a complete engineering prototype of an integrated portal ecosystem incorporating the software components. Performed small-scale technology experiments to evaluate components in the architecture which might be at technical risk. These experiments include:
- Installed evaluation copies of target application software packages in candidate computing supplier facilities to verify compatibility,
- Benchmarking application performance on target systems to extrapolate future application domain software portal performance,
- Developed prototypes to experiment with software interoperability of hardware and software systems, tools, applications, and user interfaces, and
- Evaluated external developer interface technical completeness.
- Digital Manufacturing Portal Ecosystem Demonstration
Evidence indicated that the prototype worked in an engineering development environment. Incorporated a candidate digital manufacturing portal application along with the Nimbis supplied interfaces, tools, and storefront. One or more candidate portal applications were selected. This approach flushed out any portal developer related technical or user interface issues.
The end commercial product will be a tightly integrated turn-key commercial package, incorporating a portal development environment, a hosting service for the new domain specific portal application products, and a web based ecommerce Digital Manufacturing Portal storefront with low barrier, on-demand, click-through access to the software and services hosted on the portal. Achieving the end commercial product requires three development phases. Phase 1, this phase, establishes a design architecture and a Phase 2 development plan. Phase 2 will establish a working prototype and a Phase 3 commercialization plan. Phase 3 will result in the deployed end commercial product. The scope of this investigation is on Phase 1.