Business-Driven Architect

Brenda Michelson

Curious about SoaML (UML Profile for SOA)?

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At the March SOA Consortium meeting, Cory Casanave, CEO, Model Driven Solutions &, gave an overview presentation & demo on Enterprise SOA Modeling with the new OMG SoaML UML profile. (pdf)

SoaML is a UML profile and metamodel for the design of services within a service-oriented architecture.  SoaML can be used for architecture level modeling, or as part of a model driven architecture (MDA) process, starting with a business model and transitioning through logical and physical models, resulting in technology implementation. Since it is a UML profile, it is immediately compatible with existing UML tools.

Casanave began by setting context, describing the rationale and objectives of SoaML,  how SoaML views a service (agreement between parties to exchange something),  the  top-down (business-driven) and bottoms-up (legacy-aware) usage paths, and the mapping of those paths to model driven architecture (MDA).

To bring the specification to life, Casanave walked through the artifacts related to a claims processing scenario, including the services architecture model (see below), business process model, service contract, participant interaction model, message types, service interface, service usage, participant model, composite application structure and information model. 

[Click on Picture to Enlarge]

Included in the example was the iteration of model detail as the process moved from business concept to logical model to systems model.  In a follow-on demonstration, Casanave highlighted the transition from physical model to technology implementation using ModelPro, a new open source tool.

Even if you don’t have the time to listen to the podcast of Cory’s talk, I highly recommend flipping through the slide deck to see SoaML in the context of a real business example.  All of the artifact slides are nicely annotated like the one above.

To listen to the audio recording of the presentation portion of Casanave’s session and/or view the rest of the slides go here.  To view the entire SoaML specification, please go here. (200 page pdf)


[Disclosure: The SOA Consortium is a client of my company, Elemental Links.]


Yes, Brenda, I do curious about SoaML.

You have posted a very nice info about Cory's presentation. Thank you for this.

I do not know if got into details of the presentation but to me it seems about many things but SOA.

In SOA, the central role is Service and Service Consumer. In the SoaML, as presented by Cory, the central role is Participant and interaction between Consumer and Service Provider roles while 'service' is something like an interface in this interactions. At a glance, I have not found much of service orientation in the presentation, unfortunately.


as far I can see from the slides there is talked about consuming and providing services. So I don't know why should not be in focus of SOA.

In the slides is e.g. stated: "A ServicesArchitecture (or SOA) is a network of participant roles providing and consuming services to fulfill a purpose".
So, that's - simplified - SOA.

Anyhow, from my point of view it is a little bit too much of UML - regarding the non-technical persons who will probably also have to deal with these models and definitions. But thats owing the "OMG" and their point of view/interests (UML, MDA). What I am missing also is BPMN as "the" process modeling notation for experts on both sides (business/technical).

Brenda Michelson, Principal of Elemental Links, shares her view on architectural strategies, technology trends, business, and relevance.

Brenda Michelson

Brenda Michelson is the principal of Elemental Links an advisory & consulting practice focused on business-technology capabilities that increase business visibility and responsiveness. Follow Brenda on Twitter.


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