Backbone and edge - architecting the balance between continuity and change


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Presentation at IASA 2013, April 2013

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Backbone and edge - architecting the balance between continuity and change

  1. 1. Backbone and edgearchitecting the balancebetween continuity and changeTom Graves, Tetradian ConsultingIASA Architecture Summit, London, April 2013
  2. 2. Hi.I’m Tom.(That’s all of the PR stuff out of the way...)
  3. 3. Governance.(Okay, it’s not a popular word...but we do have to face it,otherwise nothing works...)
  4. 4. Waterfall?or Agile?or what?(the only thing that’s certain is thatone-size-doesn’t-fit-all...)
  5. 5. A practical answer:All of them, together(Waterfall, Agile and Mixed)by using an architecture-pattern calledbackbone and edge...
  6. 6. CC-BY GardenOfEaden…agility needs a backbone!
  7. 7. Practice-stuffPractice-questions look like this slide• work in pairs, if possible• work fast – max. 1minute per question• record as you go, with notes or sketchesGet pen-and-paper or tablet ready now…(There are ~12 practical questions in this session)
  8. 8. Design and governance#1
  9. 9. Assertion:Everything in the enterpriseis connected witheverything else.(If so, we can start anywhere.)
  10. 10. Practice-questionWhat’s your problem?Start anywhere:Pick a practical challenge from yourcurrent context to work with here.
  11. 11. Trade-offs anduncertainties#2
  12. 12. Too many trade-offs?stability adaptabilitycontinuity(exploitation)change(innovation)sameness(economy-of-scale)uniqueness(market-of-one)‘control’ ‘anarchy’?Waterfall Agileversusversusversusversusversus
  13. 13. Practice-questionWhat trade-offs do you face?Summarise some examples for yourcurrent context.
  14. 14. Design for uncertaintyCC-BY Todd Hudson via Flickr…requisite-variety
  15. 15. Design for uncertainty© AviationExplorer…requisite-inefficiency
  16. 16. Design for uncertainty…requisite-fuzziness
  17. 17. Practice-questionsWhat are the uncertainties?How do you work with this?Summarise the requisite-variety, variety-weather, requisite-inefficiency, requisite-fuzziness and suchlike in the context.
  18. 18. Everything-as-a-service#3
  19. 19. Assertion:Everything in the enterpriseis or represents a service.(If so, we can describe everythingin the same consistent way.)
  20. 20. A tension exists between what is, and what we want.The vision describes the desired-ends for action;values guide action, describing how success would feel.Why anything happens
  21. 21. A service represents a means toward an end – ultimately,the desired-ends of the enterprise-vision.The nature of service
  22. 22. ProductCC-BY Kiran Kodoru via FlickrProduct is static……a kind of ‘proto-service’
  23. 23. ServiceCC-BY Igor Schwarzmann via FlickrServiceimpliesaction… …actionimpliesservice
  24. 24. Services exchange value with each other, to help eachservice reach toward their respective vision and outcome.Relations between services
  25. 25. Each service sits at an intersection of values (vertical)and exchanges of value (horizontal)Values and value
  26. 26. Services serve.(That’s why they’re called ‘services’…)What they serve is a shared vision,via exchange of value.(And if we get that right,they can sometimes make money, too.)
  27. 27. CC-BY AllBrazilian via WikimediaIt’s also always about people……‘service’ means thatsomeone’s needs are served
  28. 28. Practice-questionsWhat is this service?Whom does it serve, and why?Summarise the context as a service– its inputs, actions and outputs,actors and stakeholders,values and value-exchanges,and its overarching ‘why’.
  29. 29. Interactions during the main-transactions are preceded byset-up interactions (before), and typically followed by otherwrap-up interactions such as payment (after).We can describe ‘child-services’ to support each of these.value-add(self)customer-facingsupplier-facingIn more detail
  30. 30. Services link together in chains or webs, asstructured and/or unstructured processes, to delivermore complex and versatile composite-services.Supply-chain or value-web
  31. 31. Practice-questionsWhat are the interfacesbetween services?What is exchanged betweeneach pairing of services,or along chains of services?What Exchanges take place before,during and after each main-transaction?
  32. 32. Backbone and edge#4
  33. 33. “Let’s do a quick SCAN of this…”Making sense for design
  34. 34. “Insanityis doingthe same thingand expectingdifferent results”(Albert Einstein)ORDER(rules do work here)Take control! Impose order!
  35. 35. “Insanityis doingthe same thingand expectingdifferent results”(Albert Einstein)“Insanityis doingthe same thingand expectingthe same results”(not Albert Einstein)ORDER(rules do work here)UNORDER(rules don’t work here)Order and unorder
  36. 36. A quest for certainty:analysis, algorithms,identicality, efficiency,business-rule engines,executable models,Six Sigma...SAMENESS(IT-systems do workwell here)UNIQUENESS(IT-systems don’t workwell here)Same and differentAn acceptance ofuncertainty: experiment,patterns, probabilities,‘design-thinking’,unstructured process...
  37. 37. THEORYWhat we plan to do, in the expected conditionsWhat we actually do, in the actual conditionsPRACTICETheory and practice
  38. 38. algorithm guidelinerule principleSensemaking creates clarity for actionMaking sense with SCAN
  39. 39. Practice-questionsWhat do you need to be certainabout?What is always going to beuncertain or unique?(‘Messy’ – politics, management, wicked-problems, ‘should’ vs ‘is’, etc.)What will always be ‘messy’?
  40. 40. ORDER(a sense of ‘the known’)UNORDER(a sense of ‘the unknown’)We need governance that can adapt to workwith the full spectrum.A spectrum of uncertainty
  41. 41. One of the hardest partsof working with uncertaintyis to build the right balancebetween known and unknown- between backbone and edge.
  42. 42. Backbone and edgeorder(rules do work here)unorder(rules don’t work here)fail-safe(high-dependency)safe-fail(low-dependency)analysis(knowable result)experiment(unknowable result)BACKBONE EDGEWaterfall(‘controlled’ change)Agile(iterative change)
  43. 43. Backbone, domain and edgeorder unorderfail-safe(high-dependency)BACKBONEsafe-fail(low-dependency)EDGEplanactualWaterfall(‘controlled’ change)Agile(iterative change)Mixed(guided change)analysis(knowable result)DOMAINexperiment(unknowable result)
  44. 44. A spectrum of services
  45. 45. Choices:everything we place in the backboneis a constraint on agility;anything we omit from the backbonemay not be dependable.It’s not an easy trade-off…
  46. 46. Vision and valuesare always part of the backbone:values as ‘shared-services’.
  47. 47. A spectrum of servicesalso impliesa spectrum of governance:governance of governance itself.
  48. 48. Practice-questionsWhich services fit more inbackbone, domain or edge?What governance to apply toeach: Waterfall, Agile, Mixed?If Mixed, how would the appropriate mixbe identified and governed?
  49. 49. Viable services#5
  50. 50. Use the Viable Services Model (direction, coordination,validation) to describe service-relationships to keep thisservice on track to purpose and in sync with the whole.Keeping on track
  51. 51. These flows (of which only some types are monetary)are separate and distinct from the main value-flows.Investor and beneficiary
  52. 52. Practice-questionsWhat are the interdependenciesfor this service?What is needed from otherservices for this to be viable?Identify what is needed from value-web,direction and investor/beneficiaries.
  53. 53. More on the big-picture#6
  54. 54. “We create an architecturefor an organisation,but about an enterprise.”“We create an architecturefor an organisation,but about an enterprise.”Tom Graves, Mapping the Enterprise, Tetradian, 2010Whose architecture?Organisation aligns with structure, enterprise with story.We need a balance of both for the architecture to work.
  55. 55. “An organisation is bounded byrules, roles and responsibilities;an enterprise is bounded byvision, values and commitments.”“An organisation is bounded byrules, roles and responsibilities;an enterprise is bounded byvision, values and commitments.”Tom Graves, Mapping the Enterprise, Tetradian,2010What architecture?Organisation aligns with structure, enterprise with story.We need a balance of both for the architecture to work.
  56. 56. If the organisation says it ‘is’ the enterprise,there’s no shared-story - and often, no story at all.Whose story?
  57. 57. The minimum real enterprise is the supply-chain- a story of shared transactions.Whose story?
  58. 58. The organisation and enterprise of the supply-chain takeplace within a broader organisation of the market.Whose story?
  59. 59. The market itself exists within a context of ‘intangible’interactions with the broader shared-enterprise story.Whose story?
  60. 60. “Customers do not appearin our processes……we appear in theirexperiences.”“Customers do not appearin our processes……we appear in theirexperiences.”A question of perspectiveWe must create the architecture around the shared-story- not solely around our organisation’s structures.Chris Potts, recrEAtion, Technics, 2010
  61. 61. Every service has its own myriad of stakeholders.Whose story?
  62. 62. value-flow(‘how’,‘with-what’)value-flow(‘how’,‘with-what’)These are distinct flows – don’t mix them up!values(‘why’)values(‘why’)moneymoneyValues, value-flow, money
  63. 63. Always start from values,not money.
  64. 64. If we focus on money,we lose track of value.If we focus on the ‘how’ of value,we lose track of the ‘why’ of values.Always start from the values.(Not the money.)
  65. 65. Practice-questionsWho are the stakeholders forthis service?What are their respectiveneeds, priorities, drivers?Identify what is needed to balance therelations and priorities of all stakeholders.
  66. 66. In sourcing via supply-chain, services are ‘outside’, andboundary-of-identity and boundary-of-control are same.Sourcing: supply-chain
  67. 67. In insourcing, services are ‘inside’, and the boundary-of-identity and boundary-of-control are the same.Sourcing: insourcing
  68. 68. In outsourcing, services are ‘inside’ boundary-of-identitybut ‘outside’ boundary-of-control.Sourcing: outsourcing
  69. 69. Practice-questionsWho ‘owns’ each service?What is each respectiveboundary-of identity andboundary-of-control?If a service is outside the boundary-of-control, how is it managed and ‘controlled’?
  70. 70. Architecting for change#7
  71. 71. Everything changes…
  72. 72. Practice-questionsHow does each service changeover time, and why?How do you manage migrationinto and out of the backbone?Identify governance needed to managethis, and governance of governance itself.
  73. 73. Structure and storyAfterword
  74. 74. Nice view of structure, but…
  75. 75. …where are the people?
  76. 76. Start with structure, or process...
  77. 77. …but include the people-story!
  78. 78. What did you discover in doing this?What will you do different on Monday morning?Questions and insights• Governance (Waterfall,Agile and Mixed)• Perspective (Inside-out and outside-in)• Design for uncertainty (Same and different)• Design for change (Backbone and edge)
  79. 79. Thank you!
  80. 80. Contact: Tom GravesCompany: Tetradian ConsultingEmail: tom@tetradian.comTwitter: @tetradian ( )Weblog: http://weblog.tetradian.comSlidedecks: and • The enterprise as story: the role of narrative in enterprise-architecture (2012)• Mapping the enterprise: modelling the enterprise asservices with the Enterprise Canvas (2010)• Everyday enterprise-architecture: sensemaking, strategy,structures and solutions (2010)• Doing enterprise-architecture: process and practice in thereal enterprise (2009)Further information: