March 09, 2014

Sustainable Architectural Design Decisions
Software architects must create designs that can endure throughout software evolution. Today, software architecture comprises not only a system’s core structure but also essential design decisions.1,2 So, to achieve sustainable architectures, we need sustainable design decisions. In correspondence with Heiko Koziolek’s definition of architecture sustainability,3 we argue that architectural design decision sustainability involves: the time period when the right and relevant decisions remain unchanged; and the cost efficiency of required changes to those decisions.


Self-service analytics tools have value, carry risks
Speaking at the 2014 TDWI BI Executive Summit in Las Vegas, Peter Mueller, head of the global business analytics program at Lonza Pharma & Biotech, said people often refer to data as a corporate asset. But that view of information's business value can be jeopardized by out-of-control BI and analytics applications, particularly when the analysis is done by workers with little training. If a company isn't careful, the analysis process can be mismanaged or misinterpreted, leading to potentially damaging data inconsistencies and faulty findings.


The Principles of Agile Enterprise Architecture Management
The Agile Enterprise Architecture is all about letting changes happen and thus keep the Architectural Principles continuously evolving. This will also call for having an appropriate lifecycle that facilitates the evolution, development and adaption of the current and the target reference architecture continuously. This will keep the maturity levels of various IT management functions also changing over time. In this blog, let us focus on the key principles that enables an Agile Enterprise Architecture Management


Eight Eye-openers From Salesforce.com's Annual Report
Last week, Salesforce.com reported its fourth-quarter and year-end fiscal 2014 results, announcing a major bump in revenue and even raising its guidance significantly. But the fast-growing cloud vendor is also continuing to post significant losses as it spends big on sales, marketing and acquisitions. Salesforce.com's annual report, which was released this week, paints a fuller picture of the vendor's opportunities and challenges, while also revealing a series of eyebrow-raising facts. Here's a look at some of the highlights.



Information Management: A Love Triangle
Let’s take a closer look at the interplay among these three categories. We have all heard the expression “time is money.” How many of us have stopped to consider that in the realm of resource management, information is money? Literally! For many, the information resource is literally, a financial resource. How many people receive a paycheck anymore? In 2008, according to the U.S. Treasury Department, 66 percent of Americans used direct deposit where, in essence, information representing money is transferred from one entity such as an employer to another entity such as a bank, credit union or savings and loan.


Health IT benefits outweigh the negative, report shows
The report underscored quality as the metric most improved by implementing health information technology, as the lion's share of studies, 58 percent, saw positive outcomes, and another 24 percent saw mixed-positive results. When officials drilled down further into the data, they also found clinical decision support, computerized provider order entry and meaningful use all produced the most beneficial outcomes, at 66 percent, 64 percent and 63 percent positive respectively. Contrastingly, electronic prescribing was the least able to prove its worth, as more than one-fourth of all studies reported negative outcomes.


Coaching the CxO
To most managers, regardless of the level, change is considered a threat. This is particularly the case when changes imply that their own role will change, which is quite often the case for managers in agile transformations. The human brain responds to this threat in the same way as when you would encounter the growling bear. To the brain, a threat is a threat no matter if it is a life-threatening situation or if someone feels threatened in his or her organizational position.


Enterprise architecture best practices for Agile development
"There seems to be a correlation of success for enterprise architecture teams working in a collaborative, lightweight manner. Teams that are not working like that have a much higher failure rate," said Scott Ambler, senior consulting partner of Toronto-based Scott Ambler + Associates. What does it mean to work in a lightweight manner? "They're not producing a lot of documents or models because detailed artifacts tend to be ignored by development teams, if they are read at all. They are helping teams to understand what the architectural vision is and [are] actively helping to build it out," Ambler said.


Big data: Handle with care
There are two fears – coming across as ‘big brother’ and data leaks and misuses that become public, such as the OfficeMax story. Both can have a serious effect on customer retention and loyalty. In fact, studies indicate that 66 percent of your customers would leave if you lost or mistreated their data. It turns out that the mysterious asset of ‘brand loyalty’ can be quantified after all. Fearing the negative consequences of big data is a healthy exercise, but abstaining from big data projects is not. For organizations sitting on the sidelines and waiting until all the unknowns are known, you picking the wrong strategy.


Knowing the Value within your Business Model is Vital
Although much of the architecture of any business model is not seen, it is the ‘heart’ of what delivers the value. We can’t ignore or gloss over the value architecture, we must address it fully. Fluidminds business model approach devotes much of its ‘canvas’ to this part. The initial questions of clarifying the offer, the value chain, the need for identifying core capabilities, for explaining the distribution and communication channels and who the (potential) partners are, all are initially raised specifically within the canvas to be addressed.



Quote for the day:

"It takes time to succeed because success is merely the natural reward of taking time to do anything well." -- Joseph Ross