4 years, 8 months ago

NPM, Tay, and the Need for Design

Take a couple of seconds and watch the clip in the tweet below: While it would be incredibly difficult to predict that exact outcome, it is also incredibly easy to foresee that it’s a possibility. As the saying goes, “forewarned is forearmed”. Being forewarned and forearmed is an important part of what an architect does. […]

4 years, 8 months ago

Storm Clouds: DropBox’s Back to the Future Moment

One of the big news items from last week was DropBox’s announcement that it had brought its file storage infrastructure in-house, moving (mostly) away from AWS: Years ago, we called Dropbox a “Magic Pocket” because it was designed to keep all your files in one convenient place. Dropbox has evolved from that simple beginning to […]

4 years, 8 months ago

“Want Fries with That?”

Greger Wikstrand and I have been trading posts about architecture, innovation, and organizations as systems (a list of previous posts can be found at the bottom of the page) for quite a while now. His latest, “Technology permeats innovation”, touches on an important point – the need for IT to add value and not just […]

4 years, 11 months ago

All models may be wrong, but it’s not a contest to see how wrong you can be

The one thing you can be sure of is that nothing is dependent on only one thing. Michael Feathers‘ tweet last week brought this to mind: Too often we construct simplistic mental models that fail to account for outcomes that are possible, but inconvenient for us in some way. As Aneel noted while discussing OODA […]

5 years, 5 days ago

Can you afford microservices?

Much has been written about the potential benefits of designing applications using microservices. A fair amount has also been written about the potential pitfalls. On this blog, there’s been a combination of both. As I noted in “Are Microservices the Next Big Thing?”: It’s not the technique itself that makes or breaks a design, it’s […]

5 years, 15 days ago

Organizations and Innovation – Swim or Die!

One of the few downsides to being a Great White shark is that they must continually move, even while sleeping, in order to keep water moving over their gills. If they stay still too long, they die. Likewise, organizations must remain in motion, changing and adapting to their ecosystem, or risk dying out as well. […]

5 years, 25 days ago

We Deliver Decisions (Who Needs Architects?)

What do medicine, situational awareness, economics, confirmation bias, and value all have to do with all have to do with the architectural design of software systems? Quite a lot, actually. To connect the dots, we need to start from the point of view that the architecture is essentially a set of design decisions intended to […]

5 years, 1 month ago

Let’s Talk Value (Who Needs Architects?)

Value is a term that’s heard often these days, but I wonder how well it’s understood. Too often, it seems, value is taken to mean raw benefit rather than its actual meaning, benefit after cost (i.e. “bang for the buck”). An even better understanding of the concept can be had from Tom Cagley’s “Breaking Down […]

5 years, 1 month ago

Full Stack Enterprises (Who Needs Architects?)

In my last post, “Locking Down the Prisoners: Control, Conflict and Compliance for Organizations”, I returned to a topic that I’ve been touching on periodically over the last year, organizations as systems, which overlaps significantly with the topic of enterprise architecture (not to be confused with enterprise IT architecture of which EA is a superset). […]