Brian Walker, Tektronix
Quality software begins with quality design. As systems become larger, developers tend to focus more on their own piece of the system. Each developer may construct elegant designs that are masterfully crafted that simply do not fit well together. An architecture establishes the foundation of the system and defines the relationships between its parts. The architecture is not a static document because a successful architecture will grow and evolve through multiple release cycles, product iterations, operating system changes and derivative products. An Architect guides the evolution of the architecture.
The Product Owner is often focused on features. Scrum Masters often worry about schedules and velocity. The concern of an architect is to maintain the integrity of the architecture as it is expressed through iterative design and implementation. An architect works with developers to design and implement the system so that it conforms to the architectural vision. As new problems are discovered and new requirements realized, the architecture will be stretched and the architect will be challenged to guide the evolution of the architecture to meet the challenges of current efforts, anticipate future needs and maintain compatibility with the existing software.