What is IT Architecture? A one-hour video-based introduction
IT Architecture is a broad term that can mean different things to different people and in different organizations.
We can divide IT Architecture into 3 overall categories that will each have multiple sub-categories:
In this session, we will focus on Enterprise Architecture and Solution Architecture / Software Architecture, as there will be a separate session about “cloud and IT infrastructure”.
Introduction to Enterprise Architecture (EA)
Enterprise Architects are the type of IT Architects that are closest to the business and furthest away from the technical tasks. However, in Right People Group we still prefer Enterprise Architects that have some kind of technical background and a good technical understanding.
RPG mostly deliver enterprise architects to large organisations, and the specific projects are typically related to ensuring that the IT landscape as a whole is capable of delivering the needed foundation for execution of the business strategy – in the short run, but also in the long run. Therefore, a strong understanding of both IT and business processes, as well as good communication skills, are always needed for Enterprise Architects.
Check the below video for an introduction to what Enterprise Architecture is?
Why Software Architecture matters
Martin Fowler is one of our professional heroes in Right People Group. Therefore, we are not just giving you the “textbook definition” of what software architecture is. Instead, we will look at why it matters and how it creates business value in the real world.
We share Martin Fowlers belief that Software Architects needs to be able to code and have their technical skills constantly updated. We also share his belief that creating high quality software is not expensive – creating high quality software is the cheapest solution, if you look at the total cost of ownership. This is also the reason why we prefer small expert teams, compared to large teams with medium or low software development and software architecture skills.
Watch our hero in action below:
Role of the modern Software Architect
As software development processes have changed in most organisations in recent years, the role of the Software Architect in modern organisations has also been transformed. Most often, today’s Software Architect have to figure out the software architecture in an agile project environment based on an ongoing dialogue with relevant stakeholder to ensure that the business requirements are in focus at all times – even when this means that the plans for software architecture changes as the project develops. Hence, a modern software architect has to take an active leadership role concerning both processes, communication and technology.
See below for elaboration from Juval Lowy who is a thought leader within software architecture.
Software Patterns and MVC (Model – View – Controller)
MVC is a general software architectural pattern that can be implemented in many different ways and with various products/ frameworks. ASP.NET MVC is one example of a web application framework for implementing the MVC architecture.
Since MVC is a very commonly used 3-tier architectural pattern, let us take a closer look at what it is:
Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and middleware
Most enterprise companies we work with have some kind of “Service Oriented Architecture” and use different kinds of middleware in their IT-landscape.
Let us dig a bit deeper to understand the concept of SOA and middleware:
What is an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB)?
An ESB or “Enterprise Service Bus” is the technical foundation for implementing a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) as described above. The ESB can function as a systems single entry point towards all other systems, meaning that integration only needs to be done with one single system regardless the total number of systems that need to interact. The ESB the takes the role of routing and if needed transforming information between the different systems and can even add an extra layer of security. The ESB products that our consultants have primarily implemented are:
Below is a general introduction to what an ESB is, what it does and its role in a Service Oriented Architecture:
Microservices vs. SOA architecture
Currently, we experience Microservices as one of the major trends within software architecture. Many of our customers have some kind of service oriented architecture and they are interested in moving to an architecture based on microservices. This is primarily driven by the need for flexibility and sometimes also because of performance issues with their existing SOA architecture.
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