4–7 Nov 2019
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The rise, the ruin, and the rescue

Gernot Starke (aim42 | arc42 | INNOQ)
9:0010:30 Thursday, 7 November 2019
Location: M6/M7
Secondary topics:  Best Practice
Average rating: ****.
(4.50, 2 ratings)

Who is this presentation for?

  • Developers and architects concerned with the maintenance and evolution of existing systems




Developers and architects spend most of their time adding features to their products (so-called maintenance) and are often annoyed about the many deficits of these systems: even supposedly simple things are becoming incredibly difficult with these legacy systems, and the time to market is getting worse and worse as business calls for more and more features. It’s rare to find time to reduce technical debt and clean up increasingly messy dependencies.

Gernot Starke explores possibilities to systematically escape legacy hell and reduce technical and other debt in your systems. You’ll learn strategical and tactical improvement approaches you can scale to fit your actual situation. Gernot conducts a breadth-first search for existing problems, issues, and risks within your system and clearly identifies technical, organizational, and communicative debts and determines their severity in order to concentrate on the worst of them. You’ll start to improve the situation using a number of strategic approaches, including brain size, where you systematically simplify and reduce and migrate toward self-contained systems or microservices; change by split and change by extraction to reduce dependencies; improve domain focus and incrementally introduce domain-driven design practices in legacy systems (restructure to domain); and improve modularization. Gernot explains each of the approaches based on a (not very hypothetical) large-scale ecommerce system. You’ll hear about the rise, decline, and rescue of that system.

Prerequisite knowledge

  • Experience working on legacy systems, working on large (>>500kLoc) systems, and experience in heterogenous systems

What you'll learn

  • Identify technical and organizational debt with systems
  • Learn to prioritize issues by finding the worst problems
  • Discover strategic and tactical improvement approaches (beyond refactoring): brain sizing, splitting, extracting, abstracting for better modularization
Photo of Gernot Starke

Gernot Starke

aim42 | arc42 | INNOQ

Gernot Starke is a founder of aim42, a cofounder of arc42, a fellow at INNOQ, and a coach and consultant for methodical software architecture and engineering. Gernot has been involved in the design and implementation of medium- and large-size systems for organizations from different business domains, mainly in the areas of finance, insurance, automotive, logistics, and telecommunications, with a focus on legacy system evolution and improvement. He’s written numerous books on software architecture and patterns, regularly publishes technical articles, and shares his experiences on developer conferences. He lives in Cologne, Germany.

  • AXA
  • Contentful
  • Datadog
  • HERE Technologies
  • QAware
  • SIG
  • Zara Tech
  • GitLab
  • NearForm
  • WhiteSource
  • Cloud Native Computing Foundation

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