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Future Role of the Architect

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A completely subjective look at the direction the role of the architect might take in years to come, as we endeavour to keep up with the ever accelerating pace of change.

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Future Role of the Architect

  1. 1. Future Role of the Architect Reports of our extinction have been greatly exaggerated © The App Business Riccardo M Bennett-Lovsey ITARC London, November 2016
  2. 2. A little about me Senior Architect at “The App Business” Began my career as a doctor of bioinformatics Enterprise Fellow with the RSE Student of the IDesign school of architecture Co-organiser of the “Software Architect & Mentorship” Meetup Contact via www.theappbusiness.com © The App Business
  3. 3. Overview The Role of the Architect The Past The Present The Future © The App Business
  4. 4. But first… Warning: Completely subjective © The App Business
  5. 5. The Role of the Architect 5© The App Business
  6. 6. © The App Business The Role of the Architect 6 How we like to see ourselves How everyone else sees us
  7. 7. The Role of the Architect A software architect is a software expert who makes high-level design choices and dictates technical standards, including software coding standards, tools, and platforms. © The App Business
  8. 8. © The App Business The Role of the Architect 8 Solution Architect Infrastructure Architect Data Architect Application Architect Technical Architect Domain Architect Cloud Architect SOA Architect Web Architect Services Architect Platform Architect Digital Architect System Architect Software Architect
  9. 9. The Role of the Architect “… can be summarised by any one of a collection of aphorisms, which (while equally nebulous) are still long enough to use in a job specification” © The App Business - Human Resources
  10. 10. The problem is… We love to ruminate over what we are Rarely think about what it is we actually do? © The App Business
  11. 11. © The App Business Compare with other Architects 11 Building Architect Landscape Architect Aeronautical Architect Energy Architect Product Architect Industrial Architect Aerospace Architect Nuclear Architect Naval Architect Urban Architect
  12. 12. Unifying facets of an Architect Identifying practical solutions to high-value problems Integrating any number of parts* to build those solutions Often the design, fabrication, configuration and validation of those parts © The App Business *define as necessary (my thoughts)
  13. 13. © The App Business Architectural Overheads 13 Constraints Regulations Governance Stakeholders Risk Compliance Dependencies Politics Quality Control Legacy Systems Process Planning Budget Communication Diplomacy Requirements Schedule Technology
  14. 14. The Past 14© The App Business
  15. 15. A quick history of software © The App Business First digital computer built First software held in electronic memory “Decomposing Systems into Modules” published by Parnas Software Engineering Institute established First mainframe systems First NATO Software Engineering Conference World Wide Web invented 1940 1950 20201960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2010 Amazon EC2 released Java released .NET released Microsoft Azure released Docker released Azure Service Fabric released
  16. 16. Where were the Architects? For as long people have built software there have been Architects © The App Business (whether they were called that or not)
  17. 17. Who were the Architects? Chief Technician System Engineer Technical Lead Lead Developer Architect (occasionally) Technical Manager Development Lead © The App Business
  18. 18. © The App Business Core challenges have changed over time 18 Stopping valves burning out Stopping the punchcards disintegrating Access to the mainframe Having enough processing power Having enough memory Having enough storage Having enough bandwidth Having the best platform Having the best developers Having the best testers Having the best security Service scalability 24/7 availability Geo-redundancy
  19. 19. Software Crisis 19© The App Business
  20. 20. Crisis? What Crisis? Projects over-budget Projects running over-time Inefficient software Low quality deliverables Unmet requirements Unmaintainable products Projects just not delivered © The App Business (half a century of mediocrity)
  21. 21. Crisis? What Crisis? Projects over-budget Projects running over-time Inefficient software Low quality deliverables Unmet requirements Unmaintainable products Projects just not delivered © The App Business (half a century of mediocrity)
  22. 22. Crisis? What Crisis? Why is there no “Electronics Crisis”? … “Aeronautical Crisis”? … “Construction Crisis”? … “Manufacturing Crisis”? … “Mining Crisis”? … “Transport Crisis”? … “Agricultural Crisis”? © The App Business
  23. 23. So, it’s just us and… © The App Business Merchant Bankers
  24. 24. What went wrong? 24© The App Business
  25. 25. What went wrong? Did technology change too quickly? Was software too unconstrained? Did enough people know what they were doing? Did enough people care? Were enough people held accountable? © The App Business
  26. 26. What went wrong? Disciplines that do not hold their practitioners to account are destined to stagnate or worse © The App Business
  27. 27. The Present 27© The App Business
  28. 28. Are we still in Crisis? Projects over-budget Projects running over-time Inefficient software Low quality deliverables Unmet requirements Unmaintainable products Projects just not delivered © The App Business
  29. 29. Why are we still in Crisis? Software is still in adolescence Is it art, science or engineering?* No regulated licensing or industry standards No formal qualification or apprenticeship required © The App Business *answer: engineering!
  30. 30. EULA: “Use at your own risk” Would you accept the same warning on a bridge? … or a plane? … a car? … a pace-maker? … a toaster? … a light switch? … a doorbell? © The App Business
  31. 31. Software has never had a “Revolution” © The App Business 1500 1600 20001700 1800 1900 Scientific Revolution First Agricultural Revolution First Industrial Revolution (Machines & Manufacturing) Second Industrial Revolution (Technology & Transport) Medical Revolution Second Agricultural Revolution (Green Revolution) Digital Revolution
  32. 32. Yet, we are all software companies now © The App Business
  33. 33. Who should hold themselves accountable? Answer: we should © The App Business (because no one else will)
  34. 34. We must drive the change 34© The App Business
  35. 35. We must drive the change Set an example to the newbies Become the standard-bearers Take responsibility for our industry © The App Business
  36. 36. We must drive the change … otherwise, why else are we here? © The App Business
  37. 37. The Future 37© The App Business
  38. 38. Remaining relevant “Revolution” begets industrialisation Industrialisation begets automation Automation begets redundancy © The App Business
  39. 39. What else must we do? What we always do: Adapt or perish © The App Business
  40. 40. © The App Business Recall how challenges have changed over time 40 Stopping valves burning out Stopping the punchcards disintegrating Access to the mainframe Having enough processing power Having enough memory Having enough storage Having enough bandwidth Having the best platform Having the best developers Having the best testers Having the best security Service scalability 24/7 availability Geo-redundancy
  41. 41. Recall how challenges have changed over time Eventually technology ceases to be the limitation © The App Business
  42. 42. Wardley Value Maps © The App Business Genesis ValueChainInvisibleVisible Product (+ rental) Custom Built Commodity (+ utility) Evolution Power Compute Production System CRMProduction Talent Web Server Website Branded Content Customer Copyright © Simon Wardley 1 Recommendation Engine in-house/agile off-the-shelf outsourced
  43. 43. 1 Wardley Value Maps © The App Business Genesis ValueChainInvisibleVisible Product (+ rental) Custom Built Commodity (+ utility) Power Compute Production System CRM Production Talent Web Server Website Branded Content Customer Copyright © Simon Wardley Evolution Recommendation Engine in-house/agile off-the-shelf outsourced
  44. 44. © The App Business Already commoditised 44 Communication Storage Compute Search Maps Availability Support Logging Analytics Office Payment Vending Scale Resilience Security CRM ERP Business Intelligence
  45. 45. Already commoditised © The App Business Even coding is becoming commoditised
  46. 46. Exhibit A: Azure Logic Apps © The App Business
  47. 47. Exhibit B: Azure Service Fabric © The App Business
  48. 48. What does all this mean for us? 48© The App Business
  49. 49. Recall the unifying facets of an Architect Identifying practical solutions to high-value problems Integrating any number of parts* to build those solutions Often the design, fabrication, configuration and validation of those parts © The App Business *define as necessary
  50. 50. © The App Business We must redefine the “parts” that we integrate 50 Scripts Functions Libraries Frameworks Servers Systems Products Services Utilities Capabilities
  51. 51. We must redefine the “parts” that we integrate Things will always need integrating © The App Business
  52. 52. Look ahead and drive innovation Move beyond just technology To realms of business and enterprise Thinking in terms of “capabilities” © The App Business
  53. 53. Opportunities are coming faster than ever © The App Business
  54. 54. Never been a better time The world needs Architects more than ever © The App Business
  55. 55. © The App Business
  56. 56. Thank You © The App Business

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