Experts defend agile methodology as best protection from digital disruptions

Why agile integration is an essential step to improving application architecture and managing the exponential increase of endpoints and user interfaces.
agile methodology

Agencies facing an exponential increase of endpoints and user interfaces are realizing that point-to-point integration is no longer an effective use of resources. That’s prompting CIOs to ask a new set of questions on how to scale data sharing and manage their growing infrastructure.

The answer, say agile development experts, is to take an integrated view of their system architecture and design for flexibility, scalability and reusability. That would allow for faster implementation of applications and decrease complexities for future improvements and modifications.

A new white paper from Red Hat, “Digital Innovation Through Agile Integration,” highlights approaches CIOs can take to tackle agile integration, using containers and APIs.

Agile integration differs from traditional integration methodologies — such as enterprise service bus (ESB) —by taking a distributed approach to integration which makes scalability easier than in the traditional vertical architecture, the report says. Agencies that have come to rely on ESBs eventually find the system has become a monolithic application and is unable to support all the new endpoints and interfaces associated with more modern data applications.

However, the paper asserts that an agile approach which uses clusters of containers would allow applications to scale independently of each other if needed.

“IT’s hold on integration has to loosen into a more modular and distributed model,” the report recommends. The benefit of distributed integration is that it supports “more modular, lightweight, and pattern-based approaches in order to meet the demand for faster and simpler integration of new services and applications.”

Moreover, an integration platform would “enable developers to quickly create lightweight API-based integration services, deploy where required, and scale those services as needed,” the report says.

The paper explains how APIs improve the way organizations share and access data across interfaces, both internally and externally. APIs enable agile teams to quickly and easily connect clusters of containers in the overall system, so they will be able to measure how a new application performs without compromising the rest of the architecture as well as reducing downtime for existing systems.

“An agile integration approach, backed by platforms specially suited for flexible and adaptive integrated solutions, can help take full advantage of existing and emerging technologies,” the report concludes.

The report cites success stories in the banking industry and the aviation sector illustrating how an agile approach has helped organizations reduce overall spending. It also pointed to ways agile integration can improve the ability to secure data and comply with regulations.

Read the white paper, “Digital Innovation Through Agile Integration” for more how agile development practices and APIs improve the way organizations share and access data across internal and external interfaces.

 This article was produced by FedScoop for, and sponsored by, Red Hat.

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