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Architecturally Focused Techniques for Managing System Evolution

  • Author(s): William Koscho
  • Publish Date:
  • Publisher: Software Engineering Institute
  • Type: Presentation
  • Description: In this presentation, William Koscho describes methods, tools, and lessons learned for gaining better insight to the customer goals, and more.
This presentation was created for the SATURN conference series and does not necessarily reflect the positions and views of the Software Engineering Institute.


Change is inevitable, beginning the moment a solution is conceived, and it is critical that we recognize and organize to embrace this idea. It may even increase, as users understand the system’s capabilities and future potential. Change is a sign the system provides value to someone, and any system providing value will generate change requests and be required to evolve and fulfill those requests.

Organizations, and specifically architects, need to provide ways of dealing with change that enable the organization to continue to meet their business and customer goals in the face of persistent change by planning for change, understanding the impact of change, and effective implementation.

This paper describes methods, tools, and lessons learned for gaining better insight to the customer’s goals and an ontology for understanding how changes may support or conflict with existing goals; and recasts policies from the accounting and audit industry to minimize the risk that design decisions (as a result of the change) negatively impact the architecture’s ability to satisfy its goals.