Monday, December 09, 2013

Inaugural ACAITA Google Hangout

The community building continues. Next week we have the inaugural ACAITA Google Hangout. This will be the first of many Google Hangouts with the focus this month being in how to build the community and how to reach-out to related professional associations within Atlantic Canada.

Time: 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm NL time
Date: December 19th, 2013
Location: Online -

  1. Welcome and brief introductions
  2. Architectural Groups and Frameworks
  3. Professional development opportunities
  4. Where do we want ACAITA to go?
  5. Community building approaches
  6. Reaching out to Atlantic Canadian IT Professionals
  7. Other (make suggestions)

Thursday, December 05, 2013

ACAITA Next Steps

Inaugural meeting of the ACAITA started with humble beginnings. I found myself in the Georgetown Pub all alone... Seriously, for a couple of minutes I was in the Pub all alone, even the bar maid went out for a smoke!

This free time being alone provided me an opportunity to reflect upon some of the amazing feedback I have received in starting an IT focused Architectural Association in Atlantic Canada. Here is a brief summary;
  • Have daytime meetings... Atlantic Canada IT professionals are much more likely to participate in professional type events during the day.
  • Don't start an association in December... The Atlantic Canadians are focused on family and December is a month of family and friends.
  • Use online tools like Google Hangouts more frequently... people are interested in participating, getting together face-to-face creates a huge barrier. Particularly for those who don't live downtown St. John's.
  • Be patient, people express interest... but actually getting them out to participate is difficult.
  • Some people are willing to put in considerable effort in supporting this idea. They will make introductions and reach out with very relevant resources. 
  • I have had 14 serious inquiries from three of four Atlantic Provinces and the traffic coming into my blog posts on the idea is well over 400 views.
Even though I am alone in the Georgetown Pub, I am still very encouraged by the interest I have had in the idea...

Next Steps;

  1. Continue to build community.
  2. Have face-to-face meetings downtown during the day.
  3. Prepare for online hangouts. Consider having themes with speakers.
  4. Reach-back to experts offering assistance.
  5. Keep the vision, hold the space!

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Inaugural ACAITA meeting

On Thursday December 5th we have the inaugural meeting for the Atlantic Canada Association of IT Architects (ACAITA). We really are at the beginning of the formation of the group... so far I have been surprised by the response. We have five people committed to the first meeting at the Georgetown pub, and a whole lot of interest from Atlantic Canada. All counted over 10 people have contacted me expressing interest in and supporting the idea of Atlantic Canada Association of IT Architects (ACAITA). To get more details of the meeting look to the meetup invite. The meeting agenda covers the following themes;

I hope we all take the time to introduce ourselves to each other. Reach out... enjoy the company of the others who are leaning toward IT architecture.

There are way more architecture frameworks than most people are aware of. The ISO Architecture group has put together an excellent list of frameworks which can be found here. The two frameworks I find most useful, are;
  • TOGAF - an Open Group Standard, is a proven Enterprise Architecture methodology and framework used by the world's leading organizations to improve business efficiency.
  • Zachman - The Zachman Framework™ is a schema best understood by reading many of the artifacts made available by Zachman International.
There are a number of groups, professional associations, etc. involved with developing and forwarding the practice of IT architecture. The ones I see most important to developing an IT Architecture association are as follows; (I am open to discussing more than these five groups when it comes to how we align the association, everything that deepens architectural understanding is good for all of us).
  1. IASA - An association for all IT Architects
  2. OpenGroup - Vendor neutral IT standards and certifications
  3. EAE - Association of Enterprise Architects
  4. EACOE - Enterprise Architecture Centre of Excellence
  5. FEAC - Training and Certification Institution for Enterprise Architects
  6. ISC - Vendor-neutral education products, career services, and Gold Standard credentials to professionals.
Roles of the Architect
There are many roles for the IT Architect. And they all have a place in getting projects to finished... When you read over the different group sites (above) you will begin to get a sense there are a lot of definitions for architects. Listed below are how I see the collection of different architecture role definitions.

  • Solution Architect - focused on the architecture for a particular solution built to meet a defined business need and / or business strategy.
  • Enterprise Architect - aligning IT architecture with business strategy. More focused on governance.
  • Application Architect - specifying the architecture for a particular software application. Differs from Solution Architect in that the application is for a specific business domain, where the solution architect is focused on a business need and evaluates many applications to fulfill the need.
  • Component Architect - designs and architects complex and mission critical software components.
  • Technical Architect - takes on the technically challenging aspects of engineering a software solution. Optimizes the design for reuse, performance, etc.
  • Database Architect - specializes in architecting data storage solutions.
  • Infrastructure Architect - focused on the server, networking and infrastructure architecture.
  • Security Architect - focused upon all things security within IT.
  • Information Architect - organizing and architecting information for usability.
  • Business Architect - plays a key part in shaping and fostering continuous improvement, business transformation business innovation initiatives.
Next Steps 
  1. Growing the Community. 
  2. Preparing for the Google Hangout.
  3. Other
See everyone at the Georgetown Pub, 8:00 pm, Thursday December 5th...