Architecture: Keep it Simple and Customer Focused

Simple architecture

One of the key ideas an architectural lead of an agile project should have in mind is to work toward the goal of simple architecture. According to David ParnasDavid Parnas, XP – Extremely What? Invited Talk at the International Conference on eXtreme Programming and Agile Processes in Software-Engineering 2002, Sardinia, Italy., this is the first step in the direction already defined by the main purpose of the architectural lead:

Simplicity comes from conceptual integrity.

Keep it simple for large teams

Focusing on a simple architecture is also known as the KISS approach, where the goal is to keep it simple and straightforward.

The architecture has to be simple to really serve the needs of a large team:

  • If the architecture is not complex, it will be understandable to ordinary project members. Therefore, simplicity should always be favored over complexity.
  • The architecture will have to change over time to meet changed requirements (or the needs of the domain teams.) Therefore, the architecture should be flexible and easy to change.

From this, it should be obvious that the architecture has to respect the circumstances of the environment, namely the organization of the project.

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