[FoRK] Re: Software architecture in the real world

Strata R. Chalup strata
Mon Sep 19 15:19:43 PDT 2005

Hi Corinna,

The IT/builder/implementor people, at least at the architect and project manager 
level, should be involved from the ground up.

Unfortunately, on most large projects I've been called in to consult for, often 
the implementors don't get called in until most of the custom engineering of 
whatever folks are trying to build is done.  Then they get grouchy when we tell 
them things like "your custom java mail queueing app needs to catch safe 
shutdown signals" or "you seem to have built in a reliance on XYZ, are you aware 
that implementing XYZ costs $ABC".

Documentation?  Yes, a challenge both to create and to maintain.

I am just starting a contract where they are paying my firm Senior Admin rates 
to essentially be a documentation clearinghouse for a complex multi-vendor 
project.  Since the docs have to pass an internal review board at another part 
of the client, one of the vendors hired Virtual.Net to take charge of making 
sure that
	a) all the technical details for
	b) all of the moving parts
	c) make it into the document
	d) in an organized fashion
	e) sane and repeatably implementable
	f) and that a process exists to capture changes and updates along the way

Essentially doing the docs for a big project like this is as much systems 
architecture as technical documentation, especially if there is a requirement 
for reproducibility of the installation.


Corinna wrote:

> This is interesting... I've only ever been involved in small projects, where
> the process is pretty informal.
> At what point do the IT/builder/implementer people become involved? Would
> you say that the process is more of the traditional, do-it-all-in-advance
> kind of approach, or more of the iterative/refine-as-we-go kind of approach?
> (Somewhere in-between, I would guess :) )   How much documentation do you
> end up with?  Is maintaining the documentation through the project a
> challenge?
> -Corinna
> "Ken Meltsner" <meltsner at gmail.com> wrote
>>And here it goes.
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Strata Rose Chalup [KF6NBZ]                      strata "@" virtual.net
VirtualNet Consulting                            http://www.virtual.net/
              ** Strategic IT for the Growing Enterprise **

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