Category Archives: EA

EA Series – Episode 42 – The most important personality trait of an Enterprise Architect

A very insightful article about why ‘Empathy’ is the most important personality trait of an Enterprise Architect.

To quote the author, “Empathy is the single most powerful, most important, and most useful personality trait that an Enterprise Architect can have, bar none“. He goes on to say that the job of an EA is all about change – to make changes within corporations and enterprises that help their business strategy. As people are resistant to change, the author from his experience, concludes that the only effective way to motivate people to change is to connect with them emotionally and articulates this with a metaphor.

You need to see the other’s world by putting yourselves into their shoes before they see your new world.

via Inside Architecture at MSDN

EA Series – Episode 40: Positioning an Enterprise Architect for Success

In this article,the author, Nick Malik from Microsoft talks about a model for positioning an Architect within an enterprise – either for a particular IT unit or for a specific business unit within the enterprise. The author provides a maturity model to illustrate the activities, goals and expectations from an architect, positioned to a specific area of the business.

He also provides a couple of interesting scenarios on how this model can be used.

A very compelling read for practitioners / technologists who are in the role of positining enterprise architects in strategic engagements and the EA themselves, to help them build a framework to establish goals and expectations from such roles, both from the EA as well as the organizations.

via Inside Architecture at MSDN

EA Series – Episode 39: The Need to Focus on App Delivery Lifecycle in PaaS

Platforms that focus on improving the entire application delivery lifecycle (and not just SDLC) is a key catalyst for business agility. Hence there should be a conscious focus on improving the app delivery lifecycle for maximum business value and cloud will fit in it naturally.

According to the author – “Cloud is the next best thing since sliced bread, isn’t it? It increases responsiveness, gives a business agility, and it enables new business models. Well, it seems not. Nearly three-quarters (74 per cent) of UK IT managers think that cloud computing has no relevance to their business. Is it fear? Are security and privacy concerns the main barriers for cloud adoption as stems from most related surveys? Or should we ask the CEO instead of the CIO? Apparently there is a mismatch between expectations (or promises) around cloud and how a large group of people perceive it. My conclusion? We should just stop talking about cloud. It doesn’t help your business, cloud is irrelevant!”

I would definitely agree on the message of this article: cloud is only a an enabler, a technique to delivery. A delivery model. If we focus on improving the overall ALM processes, cloud will fit in it naturally.

Read the full article

EA Series – Episode 38: Are you a software architect?


“The line between development and architecture is tricky. Some say it’s fake, that architecture is an extension of the design process undertaken by developers; others say it’s a chasm that can only be crossed by lofty developers who believe you must abstract your abstractions and not worry about implementation details. There’s a balance in the middle, but how do you move from one to the other?”

The author in this article attempts to answer the interesting question of how to move from being a developer to a software architect.

I like the author’s view of a software architect and the way he has presented it in this article. One of the key points the author make is that architects need to be “hands-on” and how ownership, collaboration and leadership are important qualities that an architect needs to have.

A must read for all architects.

read the complete article via Info

 

EA Series – Episode 37: Who is a business architect?

Who is a business architect? What are the prerequisites and what is the career ladder? This post, attempts to answer these questions by stating the role of  a business architect, responsibilities, skills, qualifications and how a business architect is different from an Enterprise Architect.

via Inside Architecture of MSDN

EA Series – Episode 36: Creating an Architecture Review Board

The author in this article highlights some important items that should be understood before beginning the task of creating an Architecuture Review Board within your organization. In this post he discusses:

  1. Definition of an Architecture Review Board
  2. Supporting drivers
  3. Goals

According to him, below are the specific drivers that support the creation of an ARB:

  • Better management of budget and overall spend on solutions
  • Transparency in decision making
  • Fully qualified and informed decision making
  • Reduction and management of complexity
  • Greater understanding of the solution portfolio
  • Greater ability to proactively eliminate problem solutions
  • Solution reusability through standardization, topologies and reference models
  • Opportunities for solution consolidation through the greater visibility
  • Awareness and education of architecture thought processes will organically occur and will ultimately lead to behavior of proactive solution rationalization

complete article via MikeTheArchitect

EA Series – Episode 35: 15 reasons why you should start using Model Driven Development

In this article, the author tries to answer some of the questions that typically revolve around Model Driven Development, like, why MDD and it’s advantages.

In short, it’s all about quality, productivity and alignment. The 15 reasons, in summary are:

  1. Its faster
  2. Cost-effective
  3. Increased Quality
  4. Less Error-Prone
  5. Meaningful Validation
  6. Results in software being less sensitive to changes in personnel
  7. Empowers domain experts
  8. Lets advanced programmers focus on the hard stuff
  9. Bridges the gap between business and IT
  10. Results in software being less sensitive to changes in business requirements
  11. Results in software being less sensitive to changes in technology
  12. Really enforces architecture
  13. Captures domain knowledge
  14. Provides up-to-date documentation
  15. Enables to focus on business problems instead of technology

In my view, for an organization, (esp. IT service organizations) who are used to selling programming hours, their business will be affected by using MDD!! What do you think? Could this be the holy-grail of enterprise software development?

Leave your comments.

Read the entire article here.
 

EA Series – Episode 34: Non-Technical Factors that Lead to Poor Architectures

“It is easy for us architects to think that we control the architecture design in it’s entirety. But the sad truth is that there are too many dependencies for it to be just in our control. Architecture is more than just the technical side of things. A large part of it hinders on the business problem we are trying to solve and how palatable the solution is to the end users and the IT staff. This also includes working through processes to derive to the right decisions.”

Here the author addresses various non-technical factors and dependencies that affect the overall architecture and hence the solution created. Challenges according to him include lack of business case, poor project management, disconnected activites, ad-hoc decision making etc.

Architecture is more to do with people, processes, procedures and governance than technology itself and would agree with the article that, architects should be responsible for ensuring that these enterprise processes are followed and conformed to, leading to the creation of an high quality solution.

Read the entire article here:
http://www.mikethearchitect.com/2009/10/nontechnical-factors-that-lead-to-poor-architectures.html

 

 

Case Study: Migrating a VB6 Large Application to .NET

Microsoft has recently published a case study, where an IT services provider company has migrated an ERP application totaling 950,000 lines of VB6 code to .NET in 9 months.

via InfoQ

EA Series – Episode 33: The Value of Enterprise Architecture

A measurable value proposition of Enterprise Architecture lies primarily in the data that it collects and the business intelligence, insights and the reports that it makes available to the senior leaders.

Its value lies in addressing the significant problem that exists in most of the enterprises today, which is data lying in isolated disconnected systems and due to which there is no consistent insights and value that can be derived out of this data.

The business leaders need consistent reports, insights, intelligence and analysis out of this data that is lying in their organization and EA is essential to bring this data to them in an unified consistent form to help them in making decisions.

Data is the basis of trust in EA!

This author, in this article talks about this value of EA that it brings to the table and that it’s all about data.

Read the entire article here:
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/nickmalik/archive/2009/10/03/the-value-of-enterprise-architecture.aspx