Welcome to my Blog

Welcome to my blog...I'll tell you a little bit about myself...you decide if you want to drop back in once in a while. You can even drop a few comments and tell me I'm full of it...or not ;-)

Yes, I'm a software architect...no, I don't often subscribe to traditional definitions of an architect. I liked a definition in a book by Martin Fowler (geez...when was the last time I really had to sit and read????), it goes something like this: "architecture is the hard stuff". I like it, very simple. Unfortunately, I find that a lot of "architects" forget about the hard stuff and, worse yet, treat their architectures as infallible. If you don't face down "the hard stuff" (which often occurs late in the development cycle), the architecture is incomplete.

I'm fascinated by the whole architecture thing. Its C-L-E-A-R-L-Y neither a science nor a repeatable practice (when I say "repeatable", I do believe architecture is repeatable within a particular product/context, but its less repeatable if you move from position to position...applying Bredemeyer in two places will be difficult, unless you got lucky enough to start from scratch in both places...and how often does that happen in real life). What an architect is seems to be more in the context of the company and, even, the project that the architect exists on. You'll see my architecture views in later postings. Further, I think architecture and architects must be constantly evolving to address our unique challenges as leaders and creators.

Ahhh, the storage field. You know, I haven't always been in the storage field...my Master's from Washington State was in the area of Filesystems...but then I did database for a while (DB/400), object oriented infrastructure (SOM/400, a CORBA implementation), business infrastructure (SanFrancisco), storage software and hardware, business software again, business architecture, and BACK to storage.... The whole storage field is completely unique. It has network complexity (FC, IP, iSCSI, SCSI, etc...), challenges in processing power (do you have a service processor or not?), its a hardware-centric field where software is often dismissed yet critical to success, and more. Oh yeah, and then there are the politics, standards bodies, layers of protocols, and more.

My approach to the storage field is that of any application writer...adopt infrastructure, leverage open source, don't rebuild commodity parts, be humble in what is yours to invent and can be scrapped together from other places, focus on the CONTENT, leverage your company's strengths. That last one...wow, Sun has a billion strengths. Sometimes you look around inside of Sun and there's all of this energy, and it is neither fully tapped and what is tapped is not harnessed all in the same direction.

Is that enough? Obviously this was fairly open-ended, I'll get more focused in future posts. I look forward to discussions with anyone that may read, and please, feel free to jot me a note some time. Or, lurk away.

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