muSOAing for 3/2/11 – Are you Vertically Integrated?

And you thought this term was long passé well think again. While Ford Motor Co was the epitome of VI, it even owned the rubber plantations that made the tires, manufacturers were only too glad to bury this concept after outsourcing to cheap offshore destinations became all the rage and the term rust belt entered our lexicon.

Fast forward a few decades and VI has be re-habilitated and resurrected by the High-tech industry. Apple Inc has taken the mantle from Ford and believe in controlling all aspects of every product they bring out. One may argue that this is not true VI since the factories that the products are made in are located elsewhere in China but if you think about it, the factories are purpose built for building Apple products and wouldn’t exist otherwise. Oracle is another example with it’s exadata data warehousing appliance. With the acquisition of Sun, it controls all aspects of that product offering.

The reason I started this thread is not to talk about traditional VI but how this applies to you personally and specifically as an Architect or an Enterprise Architect. I feel that, to be an effective Architect you have to be a Vertically Integrated person. What do I exactly mean by that. Watch this space for updates on this.

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