Architecture as a Problem Solving Tool

Architecture as a Problem Solving Tool

J McKee
Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 10
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5888-2.ch008
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Background: Concept Of Architecture In Commerce

Architecture is often considered as just the aesthetics of the building design but there are entire undergraduate and post graduate courses on building architecture. The study of building architecture does give a background in classic proportions for a building but also has a great deal of formal definitions, formulas and tables on the structural loads for foundations and support walls as well as the requirements for the building services such as electricity and water supply and sewage disposal. A great many technical issues are pre-solved for use in the design and development of a new building.

The idea of architecture has now been extended to the area of information technology although this is fairly recent say within the last 25 years; two of the most influential authors in the early years were Brancheau, and Martin. Brancheau and Wetherbie (1986) wrote “an information architecture is a high level map of the information requirements of an organization,” however, I believe the use of the term ‘map’ diminishes the amount of structure inherent in an architecture. Martin in 1990 drove the emphasis for information with his books on Information Engineering and his depiction of an architecture to describe the enterprise. Following this there was a focus on standard processes by the management consulting and software development world and the concept of service oriented architectures (SOA). I believe the emphasis is changing again with the requirement to determine the structure of the enterprise architecture before reviewing the processes required.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Level of Abstraction: The different views of a system from high level to low level, where the high level can be decomposed into lower levels.

Principle: The ultimate source or origin of anything from which all else is derived. A general and comprehensive law, doctrine or truth as the basis for other laws.

Blueprint: A plan of action or a guide to doing something.

Framework: Aggregate of fundamental parts of a structure, or of those which hold the rest together.

Service Oriented Architecture (SOA): A particular architecture where the application services for an organisation is provided by an external service provider through an organisations own network.

Reference Model or Reference Architecture: A model to guide and improve. These models are sets of structured concepts, guidelines and/or solutions used to guide organisations through a process.

Model: A standard pattern or example to follow.

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