As this statement implies, TRIMS is knowledge based. It uses expert knowledge, best practices, and the expertise of systems engineers and subject matter experts to define its risk identification and assessment capabilities. The leading Knowledge Base for TRIMS is that for Systems Engineering. This Knowledge Base was not developed overnight; it required several years of research and analysis of how programs evolved, where they went wrong and why, and what were the critical processes involved in system development, production, and testability. This is true in both the Systems Engineering and Software Engineering versions of TRIMS and to a lesser extent in other versions.
Thus, the task to incorporate an I&I Knowledge Base into TRIMS will require an investigation into what the key I&I knowledge elements are. I&I knowledge elements will include some systems engineering processes and practices but will be predominantly new information specific to the I&I community. The methodology to incorporate new knowledge into TRIMS is well established, but the process for a new area such as I&I requires a significant level of effort to gather and properly formulate the information into a categorized I&I Knowledge Base.
The TRIMS engine is built on a framework developed from research into the issues that affect programs as they proceed from inception to completion. To produce a new TRIMS the framework is populated to suit the specific area of interest (e.g., Software or I&I). The information contained in a completed TRIMS package comprises three basic levels, namely Categories, Templates, and Questions. Developing a TRIMS capability consists of gathering expert knowledge and posing it in the form of a Knowledge Base from which Templates and Questions can be developed. In practice, TRIMS is developed once for each type of effort (such as I&I) and then tailored for specific program applications.
Currently no TRIMS package exists for I&I. Thus, one must be developed from "scratch." The development process consists of building the hierarchical structure described above, namely Categories, Templates, and Questions. Before developing that structure, however, a Knowledge Base of specific I&I information must be developed. Populating TRIMS can then be done in the order of the hierarchy, from the top down; but it will be iterative in the Template and Question levels. That is, an initial set of Categories and Templates can be developed and then populated with Questions while further data gathering provides input for augmenting and refining the Template and Question set. A more detailed description of the process for developing an I&I TRIMS is given in Section 3 of this document.