The Walls of Enterprise Architecture


Why did we start Isima?

Monish and I have been part of delivering innovations years before they went mainstream in areas of operating systems, scalable distributed systems, ML for click-fraud, networking improvements, and platforms using APIs done right. Moreover, we have jaywalked progressively in our careers through industries, roles, and positions to build the GTM, product and technology backbone for the enterprise market. So why did we decide to leave the comfort of our careers to start Isima? In a nutshell to break walls. Let me explain using movie metaphors.

The walls of enterprise architecture

In the movie Shawshank Redemption (one of my all-time favorites), Red (the character played by Morgan Freeman) explains institutionalized.

These walls are funny. First, you hate ’em, then you get used to ’em. Enough time passes, you get so you depend on ’em. That’s institutionalized.”
Red, Shawshank Redemption

It took speaking with hundreds of customers for us to realize that such walls exist within an enterprise. Barring few exceptions, the last two decades have seen vendors, and consultants reinforce these walls at the expense of enterprise experience. Frankly, it’s not their fault – they are optimizing for their outcomes – product adoption, and service revenues. Enterprise customers know in their gut these architectures are sub-optimal but don’t have a choice; even startups fail to see these walls.

Isima questioned the need for such architectural walls using first-order principles. The end result of those discoveries is bi(OS)™ – built from the ground up to transform enterprises for the ensuing data tsunami without a forklift.

Doing what is necessary

In the movie Interstellar in a crucial scene towards the climax, there is a conversation between Tars (the robot) and Cooper (Matthew McConaughey).

Tars – It’s not Possible.
Cooper – No it’s necessary.”

Isima embodies this mindset. We do what is necessary – however hard – for our customers, employees, and investors. On this path, we built bi(OS)™ before raising a single dollar from investors, signed up multiple customers before raising Series A and most importantly, added capabilities that the market asked iteratively to break down these walls of enterprise architecture.

The guides on our (hard) journey

Friends, prospects, and investors are perplexed when they see us going years without a ‘job’, in the traditional sense. I would be dishonest if said there were no moments of doubt, especially since we were first-time founders without the glorified RSU / stock-option windfalls in our past lives. What we had going for us were our families, employees and early customers who backed our vision for bi(OS)™. Our coaches – Billy Bosworth, Manoj Leelanivas, Seth Neiman, and Geoff Barall – were generous with their time and advice, a rarity in the valley. This rarity of advice, ambition, execution, and humility are our strengths, which convinced Ashmeet and Ken to provide the fuel for Isima to soar. We are eternally grateful to all of them for believing in and backing us, in their own respective ways.

A bold path ahead

Magic happens when our blood, sweat, and tears are rewarded by customer wins. bi(OS)™ is a digital transformation engine for enterprises who want to break down the walls holding them back. We are re-imagining computer science principles of the past five decades to deliver upon what is once in a 25-year disruption. And we are just getting warmed up.

build different™. be different™.

Read perspectives from my fellow partners in this journey here, here and here.