Wednesday, January 25, 2012

How to Architect An Agile (or any other) Software System

Apparently you can't.

Architecture is a noun, not a verb. At least according to a cousin of mine, who is an architect in the non virtual sense, at Rios Clementi Hale Studios.

According to him architects don't architect. True, they are responsible for architecture. But they fulfill this responsibility by ensuring the building fulfills the purpose for which it was intended. That there is a consistent design, and that the building has flow. They make sure the building will be safe, and will survive the test of time and use. An Architect also is responsible for the beauty of his creation.

Architects do this through a combination of engineering and design, a mix of science and art. The Architect performs a divers range of tasks. Gathering requirements, performing impact assessments, conducting environmental analysis, and performing QA site visits, amongst other things.

But he doesn't architect, architecture is a result of all those other things.

IT seems to have absconded the architecture word without really understanding what it means. Ask ten different people what an IT architect is/does and you will get twenty different answers. (just ask them twice)

It seems to me that architects above all need to be real leaders who have serious (and current) technical chops. They also need to know their customers business better than they do. We could use more architects.

1 comment:

  1. True. This is why I don't call my self an architect, even though in practice, I am with +10 years and "drawing boxes roles" etc. We have too many "architects" out there already... Me? I am a systems developer, or programmer, sometimes. :)