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Assignment 5 System Architecture

The purpose of this exercise is to have you think about and to give you practice in the selection of system architecture. It also gives you practice with additional UML diagrams. You may include as many appendices as you wish but these will be read only on an as-needed basis. As always, keep aware of deadlines and the grading criteria (the evaluation matrix in “Syllabus/Grading Criteria for Homework”)


Suppose that, in order to compete with online retailers, giant FutureMart provides shoppers with an app for their wearable smart watch device (Apple Watch, Samsung Gear, etc) and an accompanying mobile application for their cell phones. The smart watch app, called WristDeal, communicates with the mobile phone app with the same name. You are required to develop system architecture for WristDeal, which encompasses the smart watch app and the mobile application.

The following characteristics apply:

  • Shoppers will be able to enter a wish list on their smartphones in advance or on a coordinating website.
  • The WristDeal watch app will use in-store wifi to track user’s location so that the user will be notified of deals, location-based advice, price comparisons and similar item suggestions depending on where they are in the store.
  • The WristDeal phone app shall notify users about their progress in fulfilling the wish list.
  • The WristDeal phone app, coordinating with watch app alerts, shall display buying alternatives that include merchandise in stock, similar items bought by others, as well as online availability of similar items for free next-day home delivery.

The following are two key simplified use cases:

Use Case A

  • The user enters a wish list into the WristDeal coordinating website (this may have multiple steps where user interacts with the system).
  • WristDeal smart watch app activates when the user enters FutureMart.
  • WristDeal smart watch app synchronizes with the WristDeal phone app.
  • WristDeal directs the customer to the closest item on the wish list.
  • WristDeal shows progress on the wish list.

Use Case B

  • User selects “Show Options” for a given wish list item.
  • WristDeal displays similar items bought by other customers.
  • User selects a similar item.
  • WristDeal displays shows progress on the wish list with the newly added item.

You are free to state additional assumptions that are consistent with the above.

Some Notes and Hints Before You Begin:

  • Accompany each requested section with a brief description that explains your thinking and choices that you made.
  • Make sure to note what your diagram is based on from research. For example, if your diagram is based on what you learned from the module notes, make sure to reference the appropriate section.
  • As usual, the notes are a primary source for explanations and examples; we also encourage you to do outside reading and research to gain additional perspective.
  • It is important that the entire solution is consistent. You will want to iteratively review all of the four sections to make sure that together they are consistent as a single solution.

Provide Models, and Packages:

  1. Common Design Goals: Review your class model and give a set of packages, and state which classes belong to which package. Explain how your packages and class model fulfill applicable common design goals – or how they could be enhanced to do so. It will clarify your presentation if you indicate where they allow (but not actually require) a desired property. Packaging choices sometimes require trade-offs. Explain these as applicable.
  1. Physical Data Flow Diagram: Design and draw a physicaldata flow diagram. Explain the parts of your physical data flow diagram that are not obvious. Your diagram should have about 4-9 processing elements. You may use Visio or another design tool of your choice (please check with your facilitator in advance).
  1. Networking Data Flow Diagram: Draw a networking data flow diagram, as illustrated in Figure 13-11 on page 505 of the textbook (Whitten et al.), note that the diagram is fairly dated so outside research will be helpful here. Your figure should contain about 5-10 processing elements. Greater level of detail than 20 elements is not required. We are not expecting you to be a networking expert: you may copy aspects from the book for appropriate rates and standards. You may use Visio or another design tool of your choice (please check with your facilitator in advance). 


Class Model

  • Hints on approaching class model are covered in assignment 4.
  • One suggestion is to approach this just like you did in assignment 4 by first writing out the entity and design classes and describing them (main purpose, attributes, functionalities and relationships to other classes), you can place these in the appendices.

Common Design Goals

  • This is harder than it looks; you will want to understand the concepts first.
  • Your focus should be the beginning sections of the module 5 notes “The Goals of System Architectures and Designs”
  • Make sure to explain how the selection of your packages specifically supports for goals of system design to this scenario, avoid being generic.
  • Use outside research to support your points.

Physical Data Flow Diagram

  • Physical data flow diagrams are described in the module 5 notes within the “Data Flow Diagrams” section and in the textbook starting with page 477. An appropriate example of a physical data flow diagram can be found on p.478 (Figure 13-1). 
  • Review pages 325 through 330 on how to properly draw data flows, Figure 9-9 on page 330 may be especially helpful.
  • Make sure to understand the difference between logical and physical data flow diagrams, you are designing a physical data flow diagram here.
  • For clarity and thoroughness explain how you selected your data flow diagram elements.

Networking Data Flow Diagram

  • Networking data flow diagram illustrated in Figure 13-11 on page 505 of the textbook.
  • You may want to do some outside research to see how networking data flow diagrams are developed and used. You can include your findings in the Appendices section.
  • For clarity and thoroughness explain how you selected your data flow diagram elements.
  • Make sure that your design is clearly labeled.

Organizing Your Response

The following are suggestions to organize your response.

  • Include a title page, and a table of contents.
    • Although obvious, make sure to include your name in your assignment solution.
  • If you want to include some of the elements from the assignment directions and characteristics, organize these in the introduction section, but only include sections which you feel add to the clarity of your response.
  • Make sure to use proper headings and sub-headings in organizing your response. For example, this particular assignment has four parts, with multiple sub-sections.
  • For diagrams make sure to paste them into your solution within the appropriate section and that they are legible. If needed, provide the file separately for reference (we only accept Microsoft Office or Visio files, unless approved in advance with your facilitator).
    • Hand-drawn and scanned diagrams are not accepted, we want you to practice using modern design tools.
  • Make sure to use proper referencing in your paper. We suggest is APA format, but other formats are fine as long as it’s clear in distinguishing your work from work of others in your response, be mindful of plagiarism rules.
    • Make sure to include a reference page, but also show how these references are used within your response.