What is platform engineering? What area of life does it concern?
What elements does platform engineering consist of?
Let’s focus on the right technology
Platform engineering is a branch of information engineering that deals with the design and construction of information systems. It enables the development and deployment of applications for different purposes, on different devices, in different environments and for different users.
We base platform engineering on the idea that an IT system should be designed as an integrated platform that allows developers to create applications, deliver them by operators, and use them by users.
This approach has many advantages, including:
- Common infrastructure – In platform engineering, all applications use a single, integrated infrastructure, which allows for easier management and maintenance of the system.
- Scalability – the platform can be easily scaled as needed, so it can be adapted to changing business requirements.
- Speed and efficiency – thanks to a common infrastructure and an integrated approach, the development and implementation of applications becomes faster and more effective.
- Openness – the platform can be made available to other systems, thanks to which it can be easily integrated with other tools and applications.
- Reliability – By using best design and testing practices, platforms are usually more reliable than individual applications.
Platform engineering consists of many components that work together to create a complete system. These elements may include:
- Cloud infrastructure – the platform can use cloud infrastructure, which allows for easy scaling and system management.
- Management Systems – The platform must be equipped with management systems that enable monitoring, diagnosing and fixing problems in the system.
- Development Tools – Platform engineering must include development tools. These include: development environments, version control systems and test automation to enable application development by developers.
- Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) – The platform must offer APIs to allow other applications to communicate with it.
- Security – In platform engineering, security is critical. All elements of the system must be protected against attacks, and data must be secure and confidential.
- Integration – the platform must enable integration with other systems, thanks to which it can easily communicate with other applications and tools.
- Data analytics – Platform engineering can include data analytics tools. These tools are used for: natural language processing, machine learning and artificial intelligence.
- Automation – the platform should be equipped with tools that automate processes, such as testing, implementation and system management, to ensure speed and efficiency of operations.
An important issue in platform engineering is what technology we will choose, which we will use to build the system. Many companies choose open source technologies such as Linux, Apache and PostgreSQL because they are free and easy to use. Other companies prefer commercial technologies such as Microsoft Windows, Oracle and IBM because of their functionality and reliability.
In platform engineering, it is also important to use the best design and project management practices. Agile and DevOps methods are often used in platform engineering because they enable the rapid delivery of high-quality applications.
Platform engineering has many applications, both in the private and public sectors. Companies can use the platforms to create their own business applications as well as to manage their IT infrastructure. In the public sector, we use the platform to manage government systems such as benefit and tax filing systems.