a-guide-to-software-architecture

Software architecture is the basis of software structures and  disciplines of creating structures. A guide to architecture: patterns, types, and components.

Your company is wondering whether to have an in-house development team or hire a software outsourcing service to deliver their software product idea. So it is time for you to think about the structure of the software. What is the functionality and how will key components work together? Here are all things about software architecture regardless of models, types, and components that you need to know.

This article is for those who plan on developing a software product. It helps you learn the usefulness of software architecture models, and identify the correct model for an ideal software product. As a software outsourcing company, Adamo has profound knowledge of software architecture. Besides, we define the advantages and disadvantages of software architecture and highlight the differences between software architecture and software design.

What is software architecture?

Software architecture depicts the system’s organization and structure and also provides explanations of how it behaves. The system showcases the collection of components accomplishing a specific function or various functions. The software architecture provides a robust foundation to build software. Software architecture decisions and trade-offs impact quality, performance, and success. Developers design software architecture with a specific purpose. It is essential to accomplish these purposes without ignoring the purposes of other tools or devices. Firms offering software outsourcing services need to consider those issues related to various patterns, types, and components of software architecture.

Furthermore, software architecture is a blueprint for building software products. It presents the whole software structure, various components of software architecture, and how they interact with others. It helps software development teams to communicate how people build and develop custom software development projects.

Related Article: 4 mistakes you should avoid when outsourcing software development

Different types of software architecture

Business architecture

Amongst various types of software architecture, business architecture is one of the most popular ones. It helps define the business strategies, governance, organizations, and fundamental business processes within a corporation. This type of software architecture concentrates on the analysis and design.

Application architecture

Application architecture is another type of software architecture. This type of software architecture features the blueprint for specific application systems, their interactions, and relationships to the business operational processes.

Information architecture

Another type of software architecture that you might know is information architecture. It carries special features for its logical and physical data assets and data management resources. This type of software architecture is beneficial for custom software development projects that collect and analyze data.

Information technology architecture

Last but not least, information technology architecture identifies the hardware and software blocks that account for the overall information system. It is beneficial for the custom software development project that requires a high level of technology architecture.

Related Article: Serverless architecture vs. microservices: Future of business digitalization

Different software architecture patterns

Layered pattern

As its name suggests, people separate this software architecture pattern into layers of subtasks. Each layer has unique tasks to do and is independent of each other. Thus, when software development teams modify one component inside a layer without affecting other layers. For example, e-commerce web applications development like Amazon, etc

  • Presentation layer: The user interface layer enters data into an application.
  • Business layer: It is responsible for implementing business logic as per the request.
  • Application layer: This layer is a medium for communication between others.
  • Data layer: It has a database for managing and analyzing data.

The client-server software architecture pattern

This software architecture pattern includes a server and multiple clients. The server has resources regardless of data, flies, and services while a client requires the server for a specific resource. The server will request and respond accordingly. Email, WWW, file sharing apps, etc are some examples.

Event-driven pattern

The software architecture pattern is an agile method where people start events through services or operations of the software. When users take action in the application using the EDA method, there is a change and a reaction called an event in the state. For instance, developing websites with JavaScript and e-commerce websites are notable examples.

Microkernel pattern

The software architecture pattern includes two components regardless of a core system and plug-in modules. The core system deals with fundamental and minimal operations. Meanwhile, the plug-in modules handle various functionalities and specific processes. Microkernel pattern is ideal for product-based and scheduling applications such as Instagram reels and Youtube Shorts. So this software architecture pattern is mostly preferred for applications development. Firms offering software outsourcing services may consider this pattern for their custom software development products related to e-commerce.

Microservices pattern

Combining small services and the actual application will be the concept of a microservice pattern. Adding various features and modifying existing microservices is no longer a challenging task. Those modules in the software architecture pattern are loosely coupled. Thus. they can be understandable, changeable, and scalable. Netflix is one of the most common examples of software using a microservices architecture. So it is most suitable for websites and mobile apps with small components.

Key software architecture elements

People classify software architecture elements into some key categories such as components, connectors, and data. So they can achieve the desired set of architectural properties.

Components

It is an abstract unit of software instructions and inside the state that provides the transformation of data through its interface. This is the most easily recognized sector of software architecture. Those transformations consist of loading into memory from second storage, calculations, encapsulation with other data, etc. Each component is a part of the software architecture insofar since people can observe from the point of view of other components.

Connectors

It is a mechanism that links communication, coordination, or cooperation amongst different components. When developing custom apps, software development teams might consider the roles of connectors. The connectors play as the glue that links various pieces of the software architecture together. For instance, they include shared representations, message-passing protocols, and data streams. Internally, a connector includes a subsystem of components that transform data for transfer and then reverse the transformation for delivery.

Data

It is a software architecture element of information that people transform from a component, or receive a component through a connector. For example, they can be byte-sequences, messages, marshaled parameters, and objects. However, it excludes information that is permanently resident within a component.

Software architecture and software design

Software development teams segregate into two phases regarding software architecture and software design. In software architecture, people separate nonfunctional decisions by the functional requirements. However, functional requirements are accomplished in software design. Let’s explore the differences between software architecture and software design.

Software architecture

Architecture is a blueprint for a system. It features an abstraction to manage the system complexity and build a communication and coordination system amongst various components. Software architecture defines a structured system to meet all technical and operational requirements while optimizing attributes. Besides, it involves various important decisions about the organizations such as custom software development. Each decision has a significant impact on the quality, maintainability, and performance of the final product.

Software architecture design

It provides a design plan describing various system elements related to how they fit and work together to meet requirements. The objectives of having a specific plan such as:

  • Negotiate various requirements and set expectations with customers, marketing department, and management goals.
  • Act as a blueprint in the custom software development process.
  • Carry out the implementation tasks such as detailed design, coding, integration, and testing.
Related Article: Creating a mobile app prototyping: Sketch, Mockup, and Wireframe

Advantages and disadvantages of software architecture

Advantages of software architecture

If developers can understand the structure of the architecture well, they can modify the working of the software elements. It is essential to understand and satisfy the requirements of customers through architecture.

Furthermore, software architecture rarely deals with both functional and quality requirements. Once developers understand the software architecture and its development, it will improve the market position of organizations. Since they will say no to suppliers that understand your clients well. Software development teams should understand all use cases in the software architecture, especially knowing specific scenarios. It helps them boost their confidence and morale. As a result, the profit of the company will increase.

Disadvantages of software architecture

High bandwidth server

As services send and receive messages and information many times in a day. Thus, there is a need for a high-speed server.

Extra overhead

In software architecture, developers validate all inputs on the client system before. It is sent to service. If people use multiple services, it overhead your system with further computations.

High cost

Software architecture is expensive regardless of human resources, technology, and development.

Other

Software architecture is not suitable for non-distributed or stand-alone systems.

Closing thoughts

We have just provided you with necessary information regarding patterns, types, and components of software architecture. Besides, this article also highlights the advantages and disadvantages of software architecture. As a software outsourcing service, Adamo sees that understanding the software architecture is essential while developing custom software development products.

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