Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Intended (Good Architecture) vs Actual (Real Architecture)

I just stumbled by accident accross a nice video: RSA Animate - The Internet in Society: Empowering or Censoring Citizens?

And there is one key take-away for me in that video: Never confuse the intended use of technology (good architecture) with the actual use (real architecture). To use that stress field for designing an even better solution (good architecture) which is then also used (real architecture) it is worth spending time on the conflicts between good and real architecture. A classical Fit/Gap Analysis might help from a mechanical point of view here, but in general that area of conflict is of special interest, because as high energy areas it might be the place where new innovation is born (despite all the waste which is most likely also generated). So look beyond the obvious and use the daily applied stupidity to find brilliant innovation ideas.

Good luck.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Evolution of IT - Stage 1 - The Developer

I failed to write the book (actually two) which I planned to do as mentioned in an old blog post. It almost killed my blogging, because I put my writing energy into the book, but never really managed to get something to paper (or leanpub to be more precise). In fact it pretty much felt like Gerhard Polts "Der Gedanke". If you are interested a link to a audio file on youtube (in german).
So instead of continue to failing with the book I plan to write more blog posts again and I will use some of the thoughts I had for the book in a series of posts. I will try to share my mental model (inspired by Tom Graves and his great and interesting post "How do you think?"). My conclusion is total different than his, but that is something I reserve for another post. You might have read about my thoughts behind GLUE, and this is what I will try to re-explain in a total different way. My working title for the moment is Evolution of IT and I will start with Stage 1 - The Developer.
Unce upon a time a person was facing a a truly challenging problem. This person had an idea how to overcome the problem, an idea which was most likely based on collision of other ideas, as Steven Johnson puts it so great in his book Where Good Ideas Come From. To solve the challenge this person developed a solution and was therefore the first Developer of a new tribe.

As I have put in an old post of mine, this is the only value adding activity of IT (the new tribe) and therefore it is brilliant that the developer is all alone and can therefore contribute with 100% of his time to value adding activities. The other good news is that there is plenty of new tribes founded all over the place. Many of them are rooted in so called shadow IT or based on hairball architecture. As I have put in an older post of mine hail the hairball architecture, because there innovation is born. (There is of course also quite some negative aspects in hairball architecture (e.g. the loss of transparency and the wasteful approach to resources), but I will come to that aspect in later posts of this series.

In my next post I will write about the first contact between the Developer and another person from another tribe and how that has changed the life of the developer.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Running and Scaling Virtual Enterprise Architecture in the Digital Age

It has been a while since my last post, but I do plan to get back into a more regular posting mode. The main reason is actually selfish. During the time when I wrote a lot here on my blogs my thoughts became more clear and it was easier for me to drive ideas and decisions. I somewhat forgot to use the cleansing effect of the blog. Every now and then I also got some feedback. That feedback was of course also helping a lot, but the head cleansing effect is by far bigger (that should not discourage you to give me feedback).

I have written every now and then about People, especially in my small series Power, Process, Project, People, a topic which I was happy to share on the Gartner EA Summit 2013 in London. I am invited again to host a roundtable and this time I have chosen the topic "Running and Scaling Virtual Enterprise Architecture in the Digital Age" which is mainly about having a purely virtual Enterprise Architecture team and no dedicated resources in a Power based structure. I plan to blog a bit about that topic over the course of my next posts. Given the fact that the event is hosted by Gartner we talk Enterprise IT Architecture of course. If you happen to be there I am happy to discuss with you, be it on that roundtable or in another place. Just contact me.

The process implementation is a vanilla SCRUM implementation to organize the core team which has a decent amount of time on Architecture topics with an Kanban based add on to manage all other people and their architecture activities. Potentially the whole organization could participate and the target is to increase the usage of the Kanban flow to secure an optimal realization of architecture topics.

The Chief Enterprise Architect (or as my official title is: Director of Enterprise IT Architecture) is taking the SCRUM Role Product Owner. One person is dedicated to the Role SCRUM Master and the core team is the classical SCRUM Team. All other people who are working on Architecture topics get triggered by the core team, so that always a core team member stays on top of the content to secure alignment in the total SCRUM team. Adding and removing people, especially in the Kanban flows, is now a fairly easy task, provided that they do understand the way we document and model.