Don’t Start Your Integration Project Before Reading This!

Architects of the integration projects commonly consider the following when designing the interfaces:

Capability: the new capabilities being created or the existing capabilities being enhanced by connecting two or more systems

Data:  what are the key data objects which need to be transmitted across the integration channel

Method: the method employed to implement the interfaces; such as SOA via web services, Point-to-point via ETL, etc.

Pattern: whether the interfaces need to be real-time or batch jobs, chatty or bulky, hub-and-spoke or one-to-one, etc.

Technology: The … Read More

4 Pillars of Enterprise Architecture

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4 pillars

 

Enterprise Architecture is concerned about 4 key aspects:

  1.       Business Architecture
  2.       Data Architecture
  3.       Application / Integration Architecture
  4.       Infrastructure Architecture

 

Below is the description and the domain of each pillar, followed by key challenges faced by Enterprise Architects (EA) to outline and embed them in the organisation:

 

Business Architecture – is the blueprint of the organisation and draws the strategic and tactical objectives of the business. It’s very much geared towards the very fundamentals of the underlying business. Business functions (capabilities), business processes and business users are main subjects Read More

When Not to Use SOA!

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There are countless of articles about the merits of applying Service Oriented Architecture across your IT ecosystem. Having implemented SOA in a number of organisations and being an advocate of SOA I can speech for hours about the Organisation Agility, Return on Investment (ROI), Reuse, Efficiency, Federation and other benefits of adopting SOA.

But surely it’s too good to be true, right?! If SOA is that good why not everyone use it already?

Like any other architectural pattern, many factors should be considered before going down the SOA path. These … Read More

Can I Get a “Takes-away, Large, Double-shot, Decaf, Three Quarter Soy Milk, Extra Hot Flat White Coffee with 3 Sugars” Please?!

posted in: Architecture, Project Management | 0

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Over-customisation? Sounds familiar? Surely it’s one of the most common architectural anti-patterns.

I have seen too many smart project teams who start with the notion of “achieve the must-haves and quick-wins first“, only to find themselves falling into the trap of over-customisation in the middle of the project and by the time they realise it it’s probably too late to roll back or course-correct.

In case of an OOTB (Out Of The Box), it’s likely because the product they’ve chosen has not been the “fit for purpose” for the requirements, … Read More

What is SAD?!

posted in: Architecture | 7

Perhaps it’s not the best acronym in IT world! It stands for Solution Architecture Document.Blueprint

Think of it as the blueprint for the solution. But if done properly it’s more than just a blueprint. SAD should articulate all aspect and concerns of the target solution and transition from “As IS” to “To Be” state. In other words SAD not only defines what the end product will look like, but also the journey to get to that point.

SAD should cover 4 pillars of the architecture:

  1. Business
Read More

Why do you keep charging me twice?! A real case-study of Master Data Management problem

posted in: Architecture | 1

Master Data ManagementThe story began when I signed up to a typical landline + ADSL for my home-office with one of the major ISP’s in Australia. There were some teething issues before my service was up and running. The normal process was to connect the land-line first followed by the internet connection. The landline connection process was a bit of a bumpy road as they initially connected a line which had so much noise I couldn’t get a stable internet connection out of it, and it took a few days until … Read More

Impossible to Accurately Estimate the Effort for IT Projects?

posted in: Architecture, Project Management | 0

Estimate Cartoon

I remember I read an article a while ago about the difference between Construction Projects and IT Projects. The similarities are obvious: in both projects it starts with a concept, then comes planning followed by design and drawing the blue print (using CAD is construction, UML in IT for example), detailed design, implementation, test and delivery.

But there’s a catch! There’s a fundamental difference between two industries – the best analogy I’ve come across (and I don’t remember where I read it so unable to mention the source here unfortunately) … Read More

Why Solution Architects Need to Constantly Zoom-in and Zoom-out?

posted in: Architecture | 0

you-have-to-step-back-to-see-the-big-pictureSolution architects are supposed make sure the solution components hang together, it is secure, efficient, user friendly, cost effective and more importantly satisfies the business requirements. This requires the solution architect to change their tone and language when talking to different people – you’ll instantly lose your audience if in a meeting with the business SME’s start to talk about why the solution needs a high performing SAN or a Service Bus; Similarly the infrastructure and hardware folks get bored when you start explaining to them the best option … Read More

Risk Manage the Saturday Night Meal!

posted in: Architecture, Project Management | 0

Risk Manage Saturday Night Meal

You are having a bunch of friends coming to your place on Saturday night. You’ve decided to cook for them; on the menu there’s French Onion Soup followed by Slow-roasted Lamb Shoulder, finished with Crème Brulee. Although you consider yourself a good cook you’ve never prepared any of these before!

Now what would you do? Download the recipes from the internet, buy the ingredients from the local store and follow the instructions on the morning of Saturday? Sounds too risky huh? There’s a great chance this will lead to … Read More