Showing posts from January, 2009

Simple Architectures for Complex Enterprises

Measuring complexity of business processes and software solutions that support them is a difficult task. Roger Sessions in his Simple Architectures for Complex Enterprises book provides an excellent math (logic) based approach for examining Enterprise Architecture complexity without getting into formal methods. The philosophy behind the approach is superb and refreshing. The chapter on technology approaches will be obsolete soon, but chapters 1 - 5 will be applicable for years to come.

Constantin K.
Firebrand Architect®

A new era of responsibility

As president Barack Obama was delivering his inaugural address on January 20th 2009 I was taking notes on how his theme of a "new era of responsibility" will affect my clients and my colleagues. Software architects have a tremendous power to make or break a system. With such power should come a great level of responsibility. But how often do you hear architects taking full responsibility for the design of a software solution? How often do you hear architects clearly justify why a certain design was chosen among an array of alternatives and how specific tactics will address domain specific business needs? Just check any software licensing agreement: [company] makes no warranties, express or implied ...

Has the time come for responsible software architecture and responsible software engineering? As a software architect how will you handle a new era of responsibility?

Constantin K.
Firebrand Architect®

Dealing with the bus problem

When a "bus problem" becomes a reality it's critical to address the human needs first. This post does not provide guidance on how to deal with loss, but if you're in a leadership position you need to know how to appropriately respond or where to go for help.

Ultimately if you hold a key position in your organization (e.g. reputable architect or a trusted advisor) you may be called upon to help right away. Your first order of business should be to get the software solution up and running by all means necessary. Be prepared to look at the source code, log files, incomplete documentation, conduct interviews with frustrated users. You will be looked upon as a savior whether you're ready or not, so you must be prepared to act like a Swiss army knife. In this situation the pressure is high and failure is not an option.

Here are the guidelines to help you think when under pressure:
- Create a plan of action. Write down everything you think you need to do. Use this list as …