Bett Correa and Russ Miller

Architectural Concepts Podcast

For people passionate about Software Architecture.
Architectural Concepts Podcast


Serving up fresh software architecture concepts weekly





Zen of Software Development at Ignite Tampa Bay

Aug 6, 2015


Bett will be speaking on Zen of Software Development at Ignite Tampa Bay.

Zen of Software Development is now available!

Jul 31, 2015


Bett Correa has published a new book! Zen of Software Development.

Do you dream of working on a team of enlightened people who create software which users love? Stop dreaming and start living! This book will get you started on your journey.

Zen is now ready to overtake our offices and enable our teams to create software together. I have laid out exercises you can do alone or with your team members to create a new awareness and Group Mind.

I’ve spent over 15 years in software development and gone from being a web developer, to a DBA, to a project manager, to a business analyst, to an end to end solutions architect, and a product owner. The pattern I see repeated over and over again is teams missing deadlines, unhappy users, buggy code, and over-budget software. The reasons I blame for this are also the same time and time again: teams fighting, not understanding each other, being stuck in the past, not understanding the users, and overall stressful team environments.

This small handbook lays out a step-by-step process to create a new awareness, first in yourself and then, you’ll be surprised to notice, in your team members. I don’t waste time on a lot of theory but focus on the facts. The layout is a seven day guide in which you have one small chapter to read each day with an exercise to help give you an awareness of the present. There is also a meditation to practice each day.

Joe Blankenship and the Geography of Cyber Space

Jul 8, 2015


In this episode of Software Architecture Concepts Podcast, we have Joe Blankenship. We discuss the new expanding world of Cyber Geography. We cover What Cyber Geography is and how it is redefining our personal identities. We talk about whether Cyber Geography is threatening or protecting us and much more.

You can watch a speech by Joe a

Books discussed and recommended in this episode:
Code/Space by By Rob Kitchin and Martin Dodge

The Production of Space by Henri Lefebvre

Philosophy in the Flesh by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson

Don't forget to check out Bett's book on Software Architecture:
You Can Be A Software Architect

Theme music by Ben Sound.

Hybrid Cloud and IBM Watson's Cognitive Services

Apr 12, 2015


In this episode of Software Architecture Concepts Podcast, we have Will Chaparro from the Watson team at IBM. Will, probably against the wishes of the overlords at IBM, shares with us the secret ways that Watson is planning on taking over the most cognitive functions currently employing humanity. We will hope to keep this episode up as long as we can before the overlords discover it! Also revealed in this episode is the actual meaning of Hybrid cloud, why would you want to use a hybrid cloud, what are the drawbacks to using a hybrid cloud, hybrid cloud architecture considerations. We also tackle the big question: Is it drastically easier for enterprises to move to the cloud these days?

Books discussed and recommended in this episode:
Building Microservices by Sam Newman
Architecting the Cloud: Design Decisions for Cloud Computing Service Models (SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS) - Michael J Kavis

Sites that Will recommends:
Microsoft Azure - Cloud Design Patterns
Find Len Bass and Michael Bass - Architecting for the Cloud and slides from Adrian Cockcroft at
Code Samples:
Don't forget to check out Bett's book on Software Architecture:
You Can Be A Software Architect

CEO Greg Ross-Munro Discusses Cross Platform Systems

Mar 19, 2015


In this episode of Software Architecture Concepts Podcast, we have Greg Ross-Munro. At Sourcetoad, Greg is creating cross platform systems that for example interactive entertainment and information displays that run on large TVs on cruise ships.

We have a lively conversation on native vs cross platform development. We also cover the types of clients that need specialized system, how to deal with nontechnical clients, and how to on board clients and make them understand the process.

‪We discuss the process after on boarding, how they move the client from the beginning with nothing to a fully working product in production including wireframes, user focused design, specialized hardware configuration with embedded systems and how to optimizing systems that have really low power, small processors, and tiny memory.

Books discussed and recommended in this episode:

Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Futureby Peter Thiel, Blake Masters

Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge by Edward Osborne Wilson

Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website by Matt Blumberg

Disruptive Possibilities: How Big Data Changes Everything by Jeffrey Needham

Learn more about Sourcetoad

Run a Successful Game Development Company, CEO Jesse Schell

Mar 3, 2015


In this episode of Software Architecture Concepts Podcast, we have Jesse Schell. We talk many exciting topics including the ins and outs of running a game development company and how it is from traditional softwar,  his secret to successful time management, what he thinks of the culture of “Lets Play Video” creators like PewDiePie, educational games might be the silver bullet to bringing more women into IT and whats next in gaming ie VR (finally). We also talk about his kick starter for the Orion Trail.  Links to things disused:  Books discussed and recommended in this episode:
The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition by Jesse Schell
The Timeless Way of Building by Christopher Alexander
The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else In Business by Patrick M. Lencioni
Don't forgot to check out Bett's book You Can Be A Software Architect

Jim McHale Discusses What Agile Has Wrong

Feb 23, 2015


In this episode of Software Architecture Concepts Podcast, we have Jim McHale. We talk about several controversial topics.- What Agilists are dead-wrong or (worse) dangerously almost-right about- Why computer scientists shouldn’t be allowed to teach programming- Does anyone else have serious doubts about the Hour of Code?- The apparent lack of awareness by management that THEY are the root cause of software problems. Listen Now:

Books discussed and recommended in this episode:How to Measure Anything by Douglas Hubbard The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul GawandeLeadership, Teamwork, and Trust: Building a Competitive Software Capability (SEI Series in Software Engineering) Don't forget to check out Bett Correa's book You can Be a Software Architect Music by

IT Kindle eBooks for Free

Jan 29, 2015


IT Kindle eBooks for Free:

Technology Predictions for 2015

Jan 8, 2015


In this episode, Bett and Russ deliver 10 predictions for 2015.  But don't worry, this isn't one of those predictable prediction podcasts,  No, we wouldn't bore you like that! Instead, we've taken time to also include those futuristic, mind blowing innovations we'd selfishly like to see come about in 2015.

Listen and be amazed by our ability to see into the future...

Listen now: (download)

What are your "A-ha"s for 2014?

Dec 26, 2014


When you look back over 2014, and all the new ideas or concepts that you encountered, which struck you as big "a-ha"s -- that is, what did you learn that will reshape how you approach software development next year and beyond?  If  your "a-ha"s don't come to you easily, perhaps listening to Bett and Russ discuss their's will help you reflect on yours.

In this episode, Bett and Russ recount their big software related "a-ha"s for 2014.

Listen now: (download)

SATURN 2015 and Why You Should Plan to Attend (with Bill Pollak)

Dec 19, 2014


If you have been following this podcast for any length of time, you know about the SEI's SATURN conference.  Whether you are new to this podcast and SATURN or simply want to know what is planned for this years event, you'll want to listen to this episode to hear what the conference chair, Bill Pollak, and his team from the SEI have planned for this years event.

The 2015 SATURN event takes place in Baltimore, Maryland April 27-30, 2015.  For Software Architects, this is a must attend event.  Also, the event is taking abstracts from speakers through January 16, 2015.

Listen now: (download)


A classic book:
Software Architecture: Perspectives on an Emerging Discipline Paperback
by Mary Shaw, David Garlan

Will be a classic:
DevOps: A Software Architect's Perspective – Coming May 21, 2015
by Len Bass, Ingo Weber, Liming Zhu

Watson for the Masses (with Michael Keeling)

Dec 10, 2014


IBM is investing billions in commercializing the Jeopardy winning Watson technology.  Recently, they made aspects of the underlying machine learning available in the cloud as services on top of Bluemix. Now anyone can build machine learning into a web site or app--mind blowing!

Listen to this episode as Michael Keeling of IBM explains Watson Explorer and the various machine learning services that are part of the Watson Developer Cloud which were recently unveiled.

Listen now: (download)



Deep QA (nuts and bolts of Watson)

IBM Partners with Twitter

Is Automation Ultimately Our Friend or Foe? (Book Discussion)

Nov 27, 2014


As computing professionals, we spend much of our time automating. Automating tasks that a human would have done manually in the past.  What's the net impact of all this automation?  Has it ultimately made life for the masses sweeter, softer, simpler, and safer?

In his latest book, The Glass Cage, Nicolas Carr analyzes this question deeply. He gives great examples, for instance, pointing out that now that our creations are becoming autonomous, our creations encode moral decisions that would have, in the past, been made directly by a human.

In this episode, Bett and Russ discuss the more interesting points from this book: The Glass Cage, highlighting how it relates to our jobs as computing professionals.

Listen now: (download)


Under N: Acceptance to Delivery in N Hours with Umashankar Velusamy (Uma)

Nov 18, 2014


While nine woman can't make a baby in one month, nine possums can...what does that have to do with software delivery?  You'll have to listen to find out.

In this episode, Uma describes his Under-N methodology.  The Under-N methodology provides a framework to uncover hidden capabilities within IT applications and IT application teams and then to use the capabilities to deliver a business need, change, or want in under N hours, where N is the absolute time it takes to deliver. It also elicits capabilities that may not yet be present but that are possible, while outlining four atomic change capabilities that, when implemented, will enable IT applications to deliver changes in an under-N fashion by mixing and matching. 

Listen now: (download)


Slides for Uma's presentation:

Good at Architecture or Coding? Compete to Prove It!

Nov 10, 2014


So you think you are good at coding or architecture?  Here's your chance to learn how to prove it to the world through coding competitions like Top Coder.  And yes, there are competitions oriented toward architecture, too.

Douglas Woolley has competed in these competitions and joins Bett and Russ to share some stories about competitions along with information about how you can get involved.

Listen now: (download)


•Facebook Hacker Cup:•Google Code Jam:•TopCoder (USA based):•CodeForces (Russian based):•Code Chef (India based):•UVa Online Judge:•HackerRank:•Sphere Online Judge (SPOJ):

Innovators (Book Review)

Nov 2, 2014


Walter Isaacson follows his biography of Steve Jobs with another great book.  This one does not focus on any particular individual, but rather starts with Ada Lovelace and flows through time, up to the present, spotlighting each of the innovators that played a part in laying the foundation for, and ultimately creating, the digital revolution.  In this episode, we briefly review this new book.

Listen to hear how many thumbs up this book received from Bett and Russ.

Listen now: (download)


The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution

Mud Wrestling with Greg Young

Oct 23, 2014


Listen to this episode to hear how wallowing around in many small balls of mud can help avoid the classic big ball of mud--and ultimately enable you too to practice "the art of destroying software".

Turns out the key to writing great software starts with planning upfront to destroy it.  In this episode, Greg shares many insights, with the main insight being that we have all been overlooking one key  "-ility". That is, is delete-ability of code.  And while some of you might argue the ideas are not new, Greg's way of presenting them definitely is.

Listen now: (download)


Greg's blog:

Programming Erlang: Software for a Concurrent World by Joe Armstrong

Learn You Some Erlang for Great Good!: A Beginner's Guide by Fred Hebert

The Glass Cage: Automation and Us by Nicholas Carr

Parallel Distributed Processing, Volume 1 By David E. Rumelhart, James L. McClelland and PDP Research Group

The Intersection of Product Design and Big Data with Natasha Irizarry

Oct 15, 2014


An interesting, entertaining, and wide ranging discussion with product designer, Natasha Irizarry. Natasha has quickly compiled some very interesting experience in software product design, some of which was gained while at OkCupid where she worked alongside Christian Rudder while he was completing his book Dataclysm.

Listen as we start with Natasha's perspectives on user experience design, experiments, strategy, and make our way to a discussion of the best selling "big data book": Dataclysm. 

Listen now: (download)


Books we mentioned:
Dataclysm: Who We Are (When We Think No One's Looking) The Boy Kings: A Journey into the Heart of the Social Network 

Antifragile Software with Martin Monperrus

Oct 6, 2014


Many of us work on systems that are designed to be quite robust, even highly available--but how can we go beyond that and make them antifragile--that is, how can we get these systems to grow in robustness as they are changed, loaded, and experience failures?  One spoiler, it involves loving errors.

In this episode, Bett and Russ discuss antifragile with Dr. Martin Monperrus of the University of Lille & Inria.  He is preparing to do research in this area and has published a paper on the topic.

We discuss many related questions, and where there are ready answers, we delve into to them--listen to hear about this very intriguing topic.

Listen now: (download)


A few of the other books we mention:
Martin's paper: Principles of Antifragile SoftwarePrior episode in which Bett and Russ reviewed the book Antifragile by Nassim Taleb

Everything is Obvious: Once You Know the Answer (A Book Review)

Sep 28, 2014


Why is the Mona Lisa so famous and what does it have to with how we do our jobs?  In this episode, Bett and Russ review and add color to the book Everything Is Obvious: Once You Know the Answer by Duncan J Watts.  The book highlights the many ways we over rely on common sense, how it fails us, and then provides strategies for overcoming those failings.

Listen to hear strategies for overcoming the failings of common sense.

Listen now: (download)


A few of the other books we mention:
The Click Moment: Seizing Opportunity in an Unpredictable WorldStumbling on HappinessThe Up Side of Down: Why Failing Well Is the Key to SuccessThinking, Fast and SlowThe Black Swan

The Secret to Writing Bug Free Code--Your Health? (with Jyoti Chawla)

Sep 15, 2014


Perhaps the secret to writing bug free code lies with the health of the coder?  Well, maybe it is a bit more complicated than that, but at the same time, your health and comfort while programming clearly will impact not only the quality of your life, but also the quality of the code you write or the system you architect.

In this episode, Jyoti Chawla, joins us. Jyoti is a nurse and a programmer, and as such is uniquely qualified to give advice on how to live long and prosper as a software professional. Listen to get important health related tips.

Listen now: (download)


Sitting is the new smoking: apps that Jyoti created:'s recent speech that relates: "The World's Most Dangerous Job"

How Watson Will Impact Your Future with Jerome Pesenti

Sep 8, 2014


After defeating mankind at Jeopardy, Watson is displaying humility and mercy by taking on a new role: assisting humans with research and finding smarter answers, for example, helping treat brain cancer.  In this episode we discuss Watson and how it will impact your future with, Jerome Pesenti, VP of Watson Core Technology.

IBM continues to make a huge bet on cognitive computing through Watson, and is extending this bet into the cloud, making Watson available to a much wider audience in the form of Watson-as-a-Service,  Is there a place for it in your architecture?  After all, having some level of machine learning and intelligence may quickly become a base requirement for enterprise applications.  Listen to learn more...

Listen now: (download)

Books that were mentioned:
Permutation City
Diamond Age
Everything is Obvious: How Common Sense Fails Us

Watson Ecosystem
How Watson Changed IBM
Build with Watson
Watson Q&A at IBM's Developer Works (interesting to peruse)

Antifragile: Things that Gain from Disorder (A Book Review)

Sep 1, 2014


Bett and Russ review Nassim Nicholas Taleb's book "Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder".  We previously reviewed Black Swan, and thought, in preparation for a deeper discussion of how Antifragile's concepts can apply to software development and architecture, that we should review this book, also.

Humans need not Apply
Everything is Obvious *Once you know the answer
Thinking Fast and Slow

Listen now: (download)

Architect as a Leader

Aug 24, 2014


In light of the size of current software projects, good project leadership is essential to a project’s success. The role of technical project leader frequently falls on software architects, yet architects are often not trained in leadership or—even worse—are not aware of their roles as leaders. Yet, the leadership architects can and should provide is often pivotal to a project’s success.

In this episode, Russ interviews Bett as she describes several concrete strategies that an architect can follow to become a leader.
Listen now: (download)

The SPEED of Trust: The One Thing that Changes Everything by Stephen M.R. Covey
Life Is a Series of Presentations: 8 Ways to Punch Up Your People Skills Tony Jeary (Author), Kim Dower (Contributor), J.E. Fishman (Contributor)
So, What's Your Point?: A practical guide for learning and applying effective interpersonal communication techniques by James Wetherbe and Bond Wetherbe