Well, I admit it. I am fascinated by architecture. Not only the Notre Dame, can you believe the French are so conceited as to put a defect in one of the arches of the grand church as to not invite God's wrath kind of architecture, but technical architecture too. Why architecture? Because architecture is the beautiful flower where design meets engineering. Well done, architecture creates the platform for unfathomable growth - witness the internet which completely changed every type of communications network on the planet, and thereby changed media, marketing, and customer relationships - just to name a few implications. It took a couple dozen geniuses like David Reed to architect the internet by creating the design primitives that provided for the simplest transmission, and decentralized error correction, among other things - which in turn enabled the pipes to scale ten orders of magnitude–effortlessly, and blowing past MCI, AT&T and IBM who all fought it. These architects did for networks what the arch did for building - they created a radically improved way of thinking and organizing the basic elements of communication so powerfully, that everything shifted in their wake. Yet, when I hear most technologists talk about architecture it reminds me of Too Far to Go, the 1979 movie based on John Updike's short stories, which I watched with my wife at her recommendation. Until I saw that movie I never knew sex could be so boring. Michael Moriarty, a fine actor traded ponderous details and nuances with Blythe Danner while the character's real life and passion of their relationships slipped away in blunted exchanges. Yikes!
Likewise, many firms could make a ton more money if they could easily move customer information around, add new functionality without wild rewrites to the information base. Well architected they could have a base for plug and play - the way Google does. Nevertheless, most organizations are more likely to employ a lot of slaves to build well covered pyramids than to search for true architecture - because they don't know any better, and its hard to find the geniuses.