Software Architecture: An Executive Overview
February 1996 • Technical Report
Paul C. Clements, Linda M. Northrop
This report summarizes software architecture for an intended audience of mid to senior level management.
Software Engineering Institute
CMU/SEI Report Number
Software architecture is an area of growing importance to practitioners and researchers in government, industry, and academia. Journals and international workshops are devoted to it. Working groups are formed to study it. Textbooks are emerging about it. The government is investing in the development of software architectures as core products in their own right. Industry is marketing architectural frameworks such as CORBA. Why all the interest and investment? What is software architecture, and why is it perceived as providing a solution to the inherent difficulty in designing and developing large, complex systems? This report will attempt to summarize the concept of software architecture for an intended audience of mid to senior level management. The reader is presumed to have some familiarity with common software engineering terms and concepts, but not to have a deep background in the field. This report is not intended to be overly-scholarly, nor is it intended to provide the technical depth necessary for practitioners and technologists. The intent is to distill some of the technical detail and provide a high level overview.