Martin Fowler’s article is barely a year old, folks have exceeded my expectations

When I first I saw a blog post by Martin Fowler’s on the micro-services, I immediately thought that the developer community was going to go crazy about the concept. I wasn’t disappointed. But thankfully, many people caught on the mania before it got totally out of hand. Martin, in his latest blog post, is among those calling for some sanity. Read Martin’s blog post here: Monolith First, by Fowler

Martin Fowler is a brilliant technologist. Needless to say. This post is going to be a recap of some of my tweets on the subject of micro-services (or “microservices” as I see commonly being written). I would have quoted a bunch of other people instead, had I seen many. But that wasn’t the case, so I’ve got to quote myself then.

The first article I read about micro-services was on InfoQ.

Some time later, I saw a blog post by Martin Fowler’s article on the same subject. Then I immediately thought, as is typically the case, that the developer community was going to go crazy about the concept. I had the following reaction.

Naturally I value the thoughts and the content of the article. But I was merely concerned that many would jump straight in and make a total mess of a rather valuable insight. The topic gained popularity quite quickly, faster than I had expected though I couldn’t say I was surprised either. Reputed analysts picked up on this.

Time going by didn’t assuage my concerns, rather, I was only getting more and more confirmations. I thought that perhaps nobody is going to adjust perceptions and expectations until disaster stories would abound. I tweeted my thought on that.

Soon enough, people started posting thoughts on what was going on.

And, to keep this relatively short, here we are, somewhat full circle, with Martin Fowler inviting for some sanity. Martin opens his latest blog post

As I hear stories about teams using a microservices architecture, I’ve noticed a common pattern.

Almost all the successful microservice stories have started with a monolith that got too big and was broken up
Almost all the cases where I’ve heard of a system that was built as a microservice system from scratch, it has ended up in serious trouble.

Read Martin’s blog post here: Monolith First, by Fowler

Skeuomorphism is right, in the apps, perhaps not much in the base platform itself

Any design when tastefully done can delight users. Any design that is tastelessly done would only highlight every other shortcoming there may be in the object being presented to users. Skeuomorphism isn’t good or bad in itself, but it would be more suited to the apps and not the underlying platform.

Arguing whether skeuomorphism is good or bad is utterly pointless. The real argument is whether a platform should be the flag bearer or not. I know a lot of prominent bloggers wrote the opposite, I’m not sure if they’re just going with the flow or really giving this topic a serious thought. Anyway, going with the flow isn’t something for me, certainly not in this case.

Any design when tastefully done can delight users. Any design that is tastelessly done would only highlight every other shortcoming there may be in the object being presented to users.

Great technology should get out of user’s way and just allow unfettered creative expression. A platform is ultimately a place of happenings, where the vendor or moderator wants to attract people and let them express their creativity. Imagine a London Westend theater with a permanent set of stage prompts for every single performance, that would be overbearing for sure. In this sense, if the platform itself is too loud and too expressive, it creates unnecessary noise that may drown the creative message being brought forward by its users.

Flat or not, skeuomorphism or not, the platform should give way to the creative work of its users. In this context, I would welcome a UI refresh of iOS. This is what I appreciate in Flickr, Instagram, Tumblr, Flipboard, all these platforms that don’t push themselves too much in your face. In some respect, the current version of iTunes on iOS and Apple’s web store, illustrate the kind of UI refresh that would be nice to see across the board on iOS7.

I wouldn’t enjoy a context where all the major platforms would look the same and keep copying each other, that would defeat the very idea of creativity. Diversity is a good thing in all contexts, it’s how we thrive and evolve.

An intelligent take on the non-sense ranting about Skeuomorphism

Joel Hladecek says, “Essentially, every user interface on Earth is ornamentally referencing and representing other unrelated materials, interfaces and elements. The only questions are: what’s it representing, and by how much?”

This is a thoughtful article, the first one I have read since somebody somehow sparked a non-sensical debate going on in recent months. The author says eloquently what I’ve been thinking, my favourite excerpt is this:

Essentially, every user interface on Earth is ornamentally referencing and representing other unrelated materials, interfaces and elements.  The only questions are: what’s it representing, and by how much?

Read up the whole article here: Why Apple’s Interfaces Will Be Skeuomorphic Forever, And Why Yours Will Be Too