Platform Strategy
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Platform Strategy

Innovation Through Harmonization

About the Book

The Lure of Platforms

Platforms seem to be everywhere, whether it’s platform business models that fuel the most valuable companies and most unicorns, 100-billion Dollar cloud platforms, or in-house developer and analytics platforms. And that's no surprise: platforms appear to be able to rewrite the laws of physics, for example by boosting innovation thanks to harmonization.

Most organizations looking to harvest the power of platforms discover that building one, or even deploying one, is far from easy. Many in-house platforms are outdated by the time they’re launched, restrict rather than enable users, and face a certain demise when their use is mandated in a last-ditch effort to make the economics work.

Harvested from a decade of building successful in-house platforms and enabling enterprises to utilize cloud platforms, this book provides a fresh look at what makes platforms work, why they are different from other IT services, and how you can use them to boost developer productivity. Sticky metaphors (“are you building a fruit salad or fruit basket?”; “is your platform sinking or floating?”; “build abstractions not illusions!”) provide actionable design guidance without being lecturing or boring.


The book accompanies you on your  platform journey, supplementing architectural rigor with real-life examples::

  • Part I: Understanding Platforms: because "platform" is an overloaded term, this part delineates the types and characteristics of platforms
  • Part II: A Strategy for Platforms: building platforms requires significant investment and stamina. Learn how to articulate your platform strategy for both technology and organization.
  • Part III: In-House Platforms: internal platforms are all the rage. Learn how to build one and how to avoid common pitfalls.
  • Part IV: Designing Platforms: platforms hide a lot of complexity but that means building one isn't trivial. Learn how to make design trade-offs using fruit salads and submarines. ..
  • Part V: Implementing Platforms: drilling deeper yet, this part discusses platform anatomy and architecture blueprints
  • Part VI: Growing Platforms: mandating platform usage is sure to backfire. Instead, learn how to build communities and support platform adoption.
  • Part VII: Organizing for Platforms: platform teams need to balance customer feedback and a clear vision.

This book is part of the "Architect Elevator" series, which provides essential tools for architects and IT leaders to drive major strategic initiatives in enterprises or late-stage start-ups. By showing the big picture and developing deep insight, the books forgo simple answers and buzzwords in favor of mental models that help readers make better decisions.

A note on pricing:

Leanpub is DRM-free and therefore doesn't foresee regional pricing. For some readers, $10 is a lot more than for others, so I set a low minimum price to reach the broadest audience possible. If you are well employed and believe this book will help you in your career, please consider paying the recommended price. If you are a student, not employed, or on a low wage, feel free to pay within your means.

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About the Author

Gregor Hohpe
Gregor Hohpe

Gregor Hohpe advises CTOs and senior IT executives on IT strategy, cloud architecture, and organizational transformation. He served as advisor to the Singapore government, chief architect at Allianz SE, and technical director at Google Cloud’s CTO Office.

He is widely known as co-author of the seminal book “Enterprise Integration Patterns” and as frequent speaker at conferences around the world. His accessible, but technically accurate essays were republished in “97 Things Every Software Architect Should Know” and “Best Software Writing”. He is an active member of the IEEE Software editorial advisory board.


The Book
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Book and Graphics Files

You are presenting on platforms and would like to use the illustrations from Platform Strategy? This bundle includes all images from the book in high resolution (300dpi) in PNG or JPG format.


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    Platform Strategy illustrations (PNG, JPG)

    Do you want to give a presentation about platform strategy? Do you find the diagrams and illustrations insightful? Then you can download 146 high-resolution diagrams (300dpi) in PNG and JPG format. Many illustrations are included in color and black-and-white.

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Team Pack - Get 6 Copies, Pay 5

Get Platform Strategy for your team - 6 copies for the price of 5!

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Event Pack - 100 copies!

Are you running a conference or in-house event related to platform engineering? Give each participant (or early bird) a copy of Platform Strategy! Contact me for bigger packages.

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About the Contributors

Jean-Francois Landreau
Jean-Francois Landreau

Jean-Francois Landreau is a Solutions Architect at AWS bringing his experience on Agile, DevOps and Platform Engineering collected over the years to his customers. He has led various platform topics in different capacities since 2007 at Thomson Reuters and then at Allianz.

He is a strong believer that you can't take enlightened enterprise decisions if you are too far away from the machine room.

Michele Danieli
Michele Danieli

Michele is a senior advisor at Imola Informatica, advising customers in the Finance, Insurance, and Services sectors on architecture, cloud, and platforms topics. After starting his career in a garage building planning software for telcos, he held technical and managerial roles at Allianz Technology, UnipolSai and IBM.

He still loves to build things in the engine room and counters architecture dogmatism with his tag line Architecture must be Useful not only True.

Reader Testimonials

Kaspar von Grünberg
Kaspar von Grünberg

CEO & Co-Founder, Humanitec

Many talk about platform engineering, much fewer really know what they are talking about. This book is a must read if you want to take platform engineering seriously.

Johannes Seitz
Johannes Seitz

Senior Consultant at INNOQ

As a software architect, I am naturally skeptical when it comes to promises of re-use bliss and acceleration through harmonization. Too many misguided, failed attempts come to mind. Gregor's book is different. You can tell that he has seen many approaches fail, as well as approaches that succeed. This book can help you navigate the murky waters of platform strategy to actually achieve results that translate into IT acceleration, not just pretty PowerPoint pictures.

Table of Contents

    • About this Book
    Part I: Understanding Platforms
    • 1.Standing on the Shoulders of Giants
    • 2.The Fab Four of Technology Platforms
    Part II: A Strategy for Platforms
    • 3.Formulating a Strategy
    • 4.Becoming a Platform Company
    • 5.The Platform Paradox
    • 6.Mapping Platforms
    • 7.Addendum: “I ACED My Strategy”
    Part III: In-House Platforms
    • 8.In-House IT Platforms
    • 9.IT Platform and IT Services Are Antonyms
    • 10.Mechanisms, Not Magic
    • 11.Do You Have an Opinion? A Mind of Your Own?
    • 12.Making Platform Decisions
    • 13.Procuring a Platform
    Part IV: Designing Platforms
    • 14.The 7 “C”s of Platform Quality
    • 15.Fruit Salad or Fruit Basket?
    • 16.Cantilevered Platforms
    • 17.Will Your Platform Float or Sink?
    • 18.Beware the Grim Wrapper!
    • 19.Build Abstractions Not Illusions
    • 20.Failure Doesn’t Respect Abstraction
    Part V: Implementing Platforms
    • 21.Platform Anatomy
    • 22.Platform Orchestration
    • 23.Ownership and Tenancy
    Part VI: Growing Platforms
    • 24.Platform Evolution Is a Cube
    • 25.The Shape of Platforms
    • 26.Charting a Platform Roadmap
    • 27.Tiering and Slicing
    Part VII: Organizing for Platforms
    • 28.Platform, Inc.
    • 29.The Soft Side of Platform Teams
    • 30.The Customer-Centric Platform Team
    • 31.Platform Teams Without Platform
    • Author Biography

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