“If I don’t understand you, it’s your fault. This has to be the most basic, fundamental principle of a good software architect (well, of any engineer), but most of the architects I’ve met so far, in many companies, don’t seem to believe in it. They don’t understand that the job of a software architect is to make complex things simple, not the other way around. They use diagrams, which are the most popular instruments of an architect, to explain to us, programmers, what he or she has in mind. But the diagrams are usually very cryptic and hard to digest.”
I’m not really into the blame game thing so I’m not going to blame others if l can’t grasp their concepts (most of the time anyway – I’m not perfect 😉 ).
However, if we flip Yegor’s statement around and make it, “If you don’t understand me, it’s my fault,” then it does describe what an OSS architect’s communication perspective needs to be.
We deal in complexity every day. If we can’t explain our concepts to our audience then it’s actually an opportunity for us to learn. To learn that our current approach is too complex and it gives us the chance to have another go at making it simpler. It gives us the opportunity to reduce the compounding complexity within our OSS environment,
l had the chance to learn this from years of working on international projects where English was a second language and in many ways, OSS was also a second language (many of the customer’s contributors came from executive, engineering, design and operational teams). A simple picture (diagram on a whiteboard) was worth far more than a thousand words.Read the Passionate About OSS Blog for more or Subscribe to the Passionate About OSS Blog by Email