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One of my developers asked me what was the difference between an architect and a developer. Given that my architects do some development and my developers do some design work, it's not necessarily clearcut.

But it didn't take me long to explain that the primary difference is the approach. A developer is firstly looking for the solution that will make a feature work (making sure that error paths are handled). This involves understanding data structures and algorithms and deciding what to do for error modes.

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An architect's primary approach is to see how the system will scale, handle failure modes staying resilient, and remain secure. Of course they're also looking at how the feature will fit into the system, but the difference is outlook - where you start looking.

It's a continuum, you aren't really one or the other. Developers also consider scaling and failure modes and security, architects also consider data structures and algorithms.

How will the feature scale, and what are the failure modes and how to handle them so that the system degrades rather than fails, all while keeping the system secure, that's how the architect starts.

Now on to our usual links to tools, articles, news, talks and as ever, all the extracted tips from all of this month's referenced articles.

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Java performance tuning related news.

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Java performance tuning related tools.

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