Architectural decisions are design decisions that are hard to make or costly to change. Hence, mature software engineering and architecture design methods emphasize the importance of architectural decision-making and capture. Capturing decisions after the fact is important, but many inhibitors limit its practice, such as the lack of immediate benefits. The author introduces a novel architectural decision modeling framework called Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) Decision Modeling (SOAD) that supports repurposing architectural decisions from documentation artifacts to design guides. The SOAD metamodel distinguishes decisions required from decisions made. The article presents several examples dealing with pattern-based SOA design. It also discusses SOAD usage scenarios, which include education, knowledge exchange, design method, review technique, and governance instruments.
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