SATURN 2015: Never Again Offline?! Experiences in the Outstanding Role of Data in a Large-Scale Mobile App Ecosystem (Session Notes)

Matthias Naab, Fraunhofer IESE; Ralf Carbon, John Deere; and Susanne Braun, Fraunhofer IESE

by Jacob Tate, Mount St. Mary’s University

Drs. Ralf Carbon and Matthias Naab kicked off the short-presentation afternoon session with their talk titled “Never Again Offline?!? Experiences on the Outstanding Role of Data in a Large-Scale Mobile App Ecosystem.” As you might gather from the lengthy title, there was an abundance of information packed into these 30 minutes.

Saab and Carbon discussed how John Deere is bringing technology to farming and creating a “mobile app ecosystem.” Their goal is to give the farmers a mobile decision support system. The architecture behind this should be pretty straightforward, right? Not so fast! Issues with data are often overlooked when software architecture is discussed. But it is just as crucial in this field as in any other field.

The presentation guided the audience through the problems that were encountered during development and how the team had to come up with their own solutions to these issues. They created a cloud backend as well as a database that can be locally hosted for offline use. This creates a host of networking and security issues, not to mention that the amounts of incoming data are increasing all the time. These problems and many others were taken on by the team with the idea that these types of issues are not usually represented in architectural documentation, but that architects should start incorporating them.

Any suggestions on how to add data to your architecture? Is it already part of yours? Let Carbon and Naab know what you think! And yes, farmers do use technology. Tweet @SATURN_news or use the hashtag #SATURN15.

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