moby - methodology for business dynamics

During the THESEUS research program, Fraunhofer IAO developed the moby-methodology (methodology for business dynamics). The idea is to provide easy to use, web-based software-tools to support both, the operational and the strategic perspective of a dynamic-company. Thus we follow the vision that information from the business model (e.g. which partners are involved, which pricings-alternatives do we have) has to be provided in the business process as well. By implication, the most current information from the process-side can show up in the business model as well. The connection of process and business model is the target of the [moby]-Toolset Research.

Please choose the desired component:

[moby:designer]bm - web-based software editor for visual business model design

You can find the web-based software editor for visual business model design here (please read the information below before using the software, you currently need Firefox to use the tool!):

You might want to invest 3 Minutes for a video showing the first steps in advance - click here. Note that there are additional video-tutorials, FAQs and documentation below.

PLEASE NOTE: This software-prototype is currently only supported to work in Mozilla Firefox-Browser and with a minimum resolution of 1440x900 pixel due to technical restrictions.

The Idea


The [moby]Business Model Designer is a web-application to visually design business models and business ideas. It is targeting at subject matter experts for business models like business developers, investors, founders and business model project groups. The core is to consequently design the elements of business models and their relations in a visual manner, to have the models available for everyone at any time and any place. Thus a web-application was the most suitable implementation-variant. The goal is to enable collaborative discussion and concretisation of businesses models and business ideas. Although it has been widely implemented for generic types of business models, some parts of the software and the underlying meta model focus on IT-companies and their business models.

The basic idea to support business modeling visually with the help of a software business model editor was described in this visionary contribution in 2009:

  • Vidackovic, K., Weiner, N., Kett, H., Renner, T. (2009), Towards Business-Oriented Monitoring and Adaptation of Distributed Service-Based Applications from a Process Owner's Viewpoint. Proceedings of 2nd Workshop on Monitoring, Adaptation and Beyond (MONA+), Stockholm, 2009.


The software is generally intended to be used by everyone who thinks of business models. The development of a business model can be done e.g. by business strategists (starting with e.g. product and business developers up to CEOs) and in teams or alone. Supported are three general roles: the owner and creator, contributors and readers. The owner can invite contributors who are allowed to change the model. Readers can only see the model. If the model is not switched to "public", than only these three groups/roles can see the business model. The process of business model design with the [moby]Business Model Designer is not intended to be done without prior knowledge of the business model term itself. You can find related sources below (see also the presentations).

List of [moby:designer]bm-Releases
  • » 01.12.2011 - 1.1 alpha-release #2 (currently live via link above)


    • Resource-classification integrated (to be compatible to classification by Seppänen (Seppänen, M., 2009. Empirical classification of resources in a business model concept. Intangible Capital, 5(2), pp.102-124. Available at:

  • » 25.10.2011 - 1.1 alpha-release #1


    • BUSINESS_MODEL_JSON - new element, extends export options
    • BUSINESS_MODEL_PDF - new element, extends export options
    • BUSINESS_MODEL_RDF - new element, extends export options
    • BUSINESS_MODEL_PNG - new element, extends export options
    • BUSINESS_MODEL_REPORT - new element, extends export options

  • » 25.10.2011 - 1.0 alpha-release #2
  • » 06.09.2011 - 1.0 alpha-release #1
Videos, Tutorials, Documentation and Basic Ontology

Help and Tutorials

You can download the underlying [moby]Business Model Ontology and a basic software-documentation below. This is a living document and will be subject to further changes and variations. Since the ontology is a direct base for the software, changes of the ontology have an impact on the software as well. Changes are delayed since the software is based on a JSON-model and the ontology is described via a RDF/OWL-model - this translation takes us some time. We look forward receiving your feedback to the software and this document!

Latest Ontology Release [moby]Business Model Ontology

FAQ and Known Issues

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is this software ready for production use?

    This is a software-prototype and not intended for production use. Please use save and export regularly. We currently can not garantuee 24/365 availability or stable operation of the software. The software is in alpha-release stage meaning not all features are implemented by now. Nethertheless we intend to provide access for the long-term.

    What is the benefit of designing a business model?

    The editor is not only suitable to design a business model visually as a network of elements. The idea behind is rather to systematically support the thinking about the single business model elements and therefore further concretisation of the whole model. Today a lot of time is spend during business plan creation. We support the opinion, that more time should be used for the business model idea and the business model design. The more tangible and specific the business model and the elements have been designed, the shorter the amount of time to create a business plan should be. For this purpose, the editor already provides detailed property-dialogs for most of the elements (still in implementation phase). Nice examples are the elements Target Customer or Service Offer.

    Can I generate a complete business plan automatically at the end?

    No. Nevertheless, a helpful step is the Business Model Report, which is a single and raw html-page containing all modeled information of the editor in a sequential manner (still work in progress, but most functions are implemented). The editor's goal is not to support automatic generation of business plans but to reduce the time required for the textual work by helping to concretisize the business model as early as possible.

    How can I log in?

    The Login is possible via any open-ID provider. For example the Google-Login can be done via: For a list of Open-ID providers see here:

    Are the saved models encrypted?

    No. At this time we do not encourage users to design business models based on critical information. The server-system and access-options are secured, nethertheless this is an alpha release not yet intended to be used in production environments. It is planned to encrypt all the data in future. Please contact us, if you want more information.

    Are the available public models the real business models of those companies?

    Yes and No. We have no influence on models contributed by the users and don't know about the details of the business models they contribute or on which information they rely on. The business models designed by Fraunhofer IAO are examples based on public available information (mainly available via the company's website and

    Where can I leave my Feedback, Questions or Problems regarding the software?

    At first, thank you for your intention of giving feedback - this is really helpful to get the prototype to a production version! Generally you can use the internal feedback-feature. It is available in the editor on the lower left-side of the page as "Feedback"-Button. Attention: This feature is only available when you design business models, not in the repository-view. The advantage of this option: We automatically get information about the browser you are using and the business model-json to enable faster bug fixing. Your feedback is only available to the managing developer of the software - Nico Weiner. Of course, you can send him directly your feedback via eMail to: nico.weiner(*at*)

    Do you use a special software-base or Open Source-Platform?

    Both editors, the dynamic process-editor and the business model-editor, are based on the oryx-editor by Hasso-Plattner-Institute HPI.

Known Issues

  • » PLEASE NOTE: This software-prototype is currently only supported to work in Mozilla Firefox-Browser and with a minimum resolution of 1440x900 pixel due to technical restrictions.
  • » The favicons of the modelled entities like competitors, partners and target customers appear very late after the model is opened. Currently no solution - we are currently not planning a cache-mode for that.
  • » With the version 7.0 and 7.0.1 of Mozilla Firefox we are facing graphical problems. The current release 8 is not affected by the issue as well as release 6.x. Consequences: the affected releases do not display the small icons at the bottom-right corner of the stencil on the pane. The functionality is not affected by this issue. Solution: No solution for Firefox 7.0 and 7.0.1. Please use the latest version of Mozilla Firefox (8 or 8+).
Related Publications by the Authors

Publications related to this editor are the result of extended empirical research (surveys at venture capitalists, venture capital receivers, IT-companies). This year a publication presenting results of interviews with the founders and CEOs of german IT-vendors will follow. Significant publications are:

Related Publications by Third Parties

Of course we are not the first contributors in the area of business model design and business model innovation by far. We have studied a lot of contributions since the last couple of years, met a lot of authors and practitioners and discussed our ideas of tool-supported business model design. Probably the largest influence on our work is caused by the work of Alexander Osterwalder ( and with the Business Model Canvas. We base our work on the canvas but follow another visualization, addded some elements we derived from interviews with founders and CEOS of IT-companies and extended the resulting model by additional third party tools. We use additional attribute-sets with the business model elements as well. But there is also Jaap Gordijn with the e3value methodology (which had very early tool-support) or Holger Kett with the combination of service engineering and business model conceptualization. Please have a look at some significant references:

  • Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers) By Osterwalder, Alexander and Pigneur, Yves, 2010.
  • IBM, “CEO-Study 2010 - Capitalizing on Complexity – Insights from the Global Chief Executive Officer Study,” retrieved from in february 2010, 2010.
  • R. Matros, C. Rietze, and T. Eymann, “SaaS und Unternehmenserfolg: Erfolgskategorien für die Praxis,” Software-as-a-Service: Anbieterstrategien, Kundenbedürfnisse und Strukturen, A. Benlian, T. Hess, and P. Buxmann, eds., Wiesbaden: Gabler Verlag, 2010.
  • W3C Incubator Group on USDL, “USDL-Specification”, more information can be found on and, 2010.
  • S. Lehmann and P. Buxmann, “Pricing Strategies of Software Vendors,” Business & Information Systems Engineering, vol. 1, issue 6, 452-462, 2009.
  • H. Kett, G. Scheithauer, N. Weiner, and A. Weisbecker, “Integrated Service Engineering (ISE) for Service Ecosystems: An Interdisciplinary Methodology for the Internet of Services,” eChallenges e-2009, P. Cunningham and M. Cunningham, eds., IIMC International Information Management Corporation, pp. 1-8, 2009.
  • M. a Cusumano, “The Changing Software Business: Moving from Products to Services,” Computer, vol. 41, 2008, pp. 20-27.
  • R. Samavi, E. Yu, and T. Topaloglou, “Strategic reasoning about business models: a conceptual modeling approach,” Information Systems and e-Business Management, vol. 7, pp. 171-198, 2008.
  • H. Bouwman, H.D. Vos, and T. Haaker, Mobile Service Innovation and Business Models, Springer, 2008.
  • A. Osterwalder, Y. Pigneur, and C.L. Tucci, “Clarifying business models: Origins, present, and future of the concept,” Communications of the association for Information Systems, vol. 16, p. 1–25, 2005.
  • A. Osterwalder, “The Business Model Ontology-a proposition in a design science approach,” Academic Dissertation, Universite de Lausanne, Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales, 2004.
  • J. Gordijn and H. Akkermans, “E3-value: Design and Evaluation of e-Business Models,” IEEE Intelligent Systems, vol. 16, pp. 11-17, 2001.

This software and the underlying meta model has been presented at various occasions. Some of these presentations are available at slideshare - Group Business Models in the Internet of Services:

Presentations in English language:

Presentations in German language:

[moby:designer]dbpm - editor for dynamic business process management

You can find the web-based editor for dynamic business process management here: [moby:designer]dbpm

PLEASE NOTE: This software-prototype is currently only supported to work in Mozilla Firefox-Browser. Other browser-plattforms have not yet been tested.

The idea
The basic idea was described in this contribution:
  • Vidackovic, K., Weisbecker, A. (2011): A Methodology for Dynamic Service Compositions Based on an Event-Driven Approach. In: Proceedings of the 2011 Annual SRII Global Conference (SRII 2011). Los Alamitos, CA, Washington, Tokyo, IEEE Computer Society, P. 484-494, 2011.
Related Publications
Please contact kresimir.vidackovic[(at)] for more information.
Please contact kresimir.vidackovic[(at)] for more information.