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Integrated Strategies in Architecture (Technologies of Architecture)

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In Stock. Seller Inventory zk Ships with Tracking Number! Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory n. Items related to Integrated Strategies in Architecture Technologies Our systems grow in accidental complexity and complication over time. To do so, we borrow metaphors from roles in other industries. With such origins, and with the subsequent division of the architect role into enterprise architect, solution architect, data architect, and so forth, the lines have blurred further. The result is that decades later, the practice and the art of the architect in technology varies dramatically not only from one company to the next, but also from one department and one practitioner to the next.

So we will define the role of the architect in order to proceed from common ground. This is my tailored view of it; others will have different definitions. Architecture begins when someone has a nontrivial problem to be solved. The product management team states what must be done to solve the problem, and the architect describes how to realize that vision in a system. The first architect of record is a fellow named Vitruvius, who worked as a civil engineer in Rome in the first century BC.


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Everyone who goes to architecture school learns his work. Vitruvius is the author of de Architectura , known today as Ten Books on Architecture. In it, Vitruvius expands on the three requirements that any architecture must demonstrate:. Skyscrapers are built on purpose to sway slightly with the wind, specifically to be more durable.

The Sears Tower in Chicago regularly sways between six inches and a foot; taller buildings in America sway as much as four to five feet.

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Your architectures, and your strategies, must be similarly flexible in order to endure. It must also be fit to purpose, which means understanding deeply what the real purpose of the system is, and how to manage user expectations. This is supported in real terms through standards and consistent application of conventions, both in the information architecture i.

It is about harmony of proportion.

Enterprise architecture

One suggestion we can deduce from this for our current purposes is that we must rightsize our architecture and strategy work for the task at hand. Vitruvuis states—without irony—that an architect must concern himself with and become educated in several diverse fields of study, such that they find their way into the work. He outlines them in Chapter 1 of de Architectura :.

A strong understanding of philosophy, in order to practice abstract thinking as well as honesty and courtesy. Art, music, theater, drawing, painting, and poetry, to help make things beautiful and well suited to their human purposes. He concludes that absent a degree of education and even lay practice in any one of these areas, one cannot refer to oneself as an architect. These are excellent guides for us in technology today. For those of us concerned with the business of making software and setting the direction for other technologists, to hold ourselves to account in these ways would serve us very well.

In a recent conversation I had with Ben Pring, philosopher, noted futurist, and director of The Future of Work Center at Cognizant, he underscored the importance of beauty in software, pointing out that historically our most culturally significant buildings have been not merely adorned, but specifically built with beauty in mind as a central, driving narrative. I conclude from this that such foregrounding reinforces in the popular imagination the power of the institutions that build them.


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  • I base this conclusion on the preface in the Ten Books , in which Vitruvius writes openly and directly to Emperor Caesar, stating:. But when I saw that you were giving your attention not only to the welfare of society in general and to the establishment of public order, but also to the providing of public buildings intended for utilitarian purposes, so that not only should the State have been enriched with provinces by your means, but that the greatness of its power might likewise be attended with distinguished authority in its public buildings, I thought that I ought to take the first opportunity to lay before you my writings on this theme.

    Realizing these broad dicta into an architecture means, I think, finding the concentrations of power, and determining how to best support and ultimately inspire the human factor in the forms we create. Whereas developers are typically focused on delivering working code for a user story within the next two weeks for one system within their one team, architects are concerned with how technology can fulfill business goals given a long-term outlook across a variety of interrelated systems across many teams.

    They should have their visors raised much higher.

    Integrated Strategies in Architecture

    The architect is hopefully not concerned with low-level details of the code itself inside one system, but is more focused on where data-center boundaries are crossed, where system component boundaries are crossed. Notice that in this definition, the role of the architect and technology strategist is not to merely serve the business but to play together.

    I have been in shops where technology was squarely second fiddle, a subservient order-taking organization to support what was deemed the real business. But more importantly, I submit that businesses, now more than ever, cannot sustain such a division, and to create greater competitive advantage must work toward integration with co-leadership. There are many different roles that architects legitimately play in different organizations.

    To stay pertinent to the project, and to help guide it in a way that others may not have the purview to do, drawing a line at these boundaries seems to work out pretty well. The definition remains, of course, rather open to interpretation, in grudging deference to the machinations of the real world. The architect defines standards, conventions, and toolsets for teams to use.

    These are common practices, and generally idiosyncratic to any given organization.

    Integrated Strategies in Architecture - CRC Press Book

    As application or solution architects, they help within a system, within an ecosystem, and across an organization to create a common set of practices for developers that help things both go quicker and be more understandable and maintainable. This is a form of containing entropy. As we mature, we realize that picking one tool or framework or language or platform is not a matter of personal taste, but rather a choice with broad ramifications for future flexibility, mergers and acquisitions, training, our ability to hire future supporting teams, and our future ability to directly support—or subvert—the business strategy.

    Working as a pattern-maker and a synthesizer, the architect-as-strategist broadens and ennobles these concerns, creating technology strategies that both are rooted in the causes and concerns of the business and recognize its constraints and opportunities.

    In collaboration with product management, and with colleagues in strategy, business development, finance, and HR, the architect works to ensure that there is alignment between the systems, yes, but also between those systems and the organization, and between the organization and its stated aims. In short, for far too long we architects have thought we were in the business of making software. I love this definition of containing entropy because it offers something to both the software-minded and the business-minded architect which I hope are two categories this book will help collapse.

    We often hear of architects with failed dreams of how the system should have been. They are consumed by writing documents and those documents are subsequently ignored, leading them to give up. Left with only the most informal conversational avenues to offer insufficient direction to teams, they become frustrated and even marginalized. Product management is responsible for specifying what the system must do for the end user. They might state functional requirements in user stories and epics.


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    The nonfunctional requirements are properties of the system that do not necessarily appear directly to the user. The architect is responsible for specifying how the system will realize the functional and nonfunctional requirements in its construction.