Open Group Enterprise Architecture Conference – Day 1

I thought I would share with you a few of my notes from the Open Group conference. I have also added some of my thoughts on the topics.I will cover the Keynotes and Roundtables primarily and add some thoughts where appropriate on other sessions.

Keynote Highlights – Real World SOA (David Linthicum)


  • Dave suggests to start with ROI first rather than architecture. I think that this is easier said then done, but I agree at a high level. I do agree that this should happen but as many architects know we are hindered by technology / strict business requirements, cost and deadlines.
  • Start the Business case right away! Yes, yes yes!!! Ideally focus first on the capability and then figure out the downstream processes you want to enable to build that business case.
  • Dave asserts that "the business" is not happy with IT. I agree and this is a perception that we need to change.
  • Dave provides a simple cost calculator and suggests us to use our own if we have one
  • He also talks indirectly about the importance of Application Portfolio Mgmt, but doesn’t directly call it out. Rather he speaks of the value of having a catalog of SOA assets that provide iterative value
  • BTW – I love the quotes:
    • "Managing SOA by Magazine" – Referring to what I lovingly call E-Weeker’s that take the guidance from the trade publications to heart and build systems accordingly.
    • "Vendor Driven Architecture" – Organizations that have bought into one SOA stack and allows that vendor to drive their SOA strategy rather than their business concerns.

Dave’s tips for getting things done:

  • Get a champion
  • Build a case
  • Show the ROI

I couldn’t agree more on these points. These very points are what I heard five years ago at the META Enterprise Architecture conference. 


  • Lack of data – I translate this to the failure to define the rights metrics and then ultimately create the mechanisms to capture. 
  • Organizational barriers
  • Organizations build SOA solutions when business requirements are not stable


Roundtable Interesting Tid-Bits

Below are some statements and questions discussed at the roundtable.

  1. What is the biggest challenge to SOA?
    1. Organizational – Too many barriers, Lack of CxO support, etc.
  2. The hype is over, now the world is focused on how to pragmatically implement.
  3. How do I solve these organizational issues?
    1. No meta-data tools, vendors are dropping the ball. I agree we have some work to do here but I think the bigger issue here is architects that have the skill set to be change agents, there is a great need for EA’s to have a tremendous amount of leadership abilities.
  4. How real is SaaS?
    1. Look at SaaS when it makes sense, not an answer for everything. There is a very clear subset of solutions that are SaaS-able. The term – internal SaaS, behind the firewall. My former boss and Microsoft thought leader, John DeVadoss was referenced about his "My Cloud" concepts.
  5. Do you think SOA and EA Tools will merge?
    1. Dave L. responded: Who has a real SOA tool, besides Visio??? I had a bit of a chuckle on that as it is the reality and glad to see someone actually say those words aloud!
  6. What about BPM?
    1. There is a clear disconnect in the industry between these functions. This needs to be fixed

Tags: Enterprise Architecture


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