I am attending webMethods Integration World this week and blogging live from the sessions. Day 2 moved on with Bruce Richardson of AMR talking about the future of Enterprise Software. Will it be SOA vs Packaged Applications?
Bruce thinks that the future of software does not include the concept of a large, packaged applications. Bruce feels that three things are coming together - SOA (which he is starting to believe is here to say), web 2.0 (enriching the user experience), model-driven development (like Workday, Dave Duffield's new company). His surveys suggest that the state of software innovation is accelerating and the line of business is more optimistic. They see more innovation in the future and so are looking for new technology drive new levels of agility and productivity.
His premise is that collaboration and business process/SOA approaches are going to replace basic connectivity and an ERP-centric backbone. He talks about a "pig in the python" where there is a huge digestion issue with all the new future ERP architectures. Customers can see the future but cannot get by the time/cost of upgrades, no down-time for changes, lack of detailed roadmaps and a lack of business architects. The future potential for innovation is being obstructed by this and the time to innovate for the ERP vendors. Meanwhile 70% of survey respondents think that SOA is crucial to future innovation, especially in reducing the cost of IT and the cost of delivering new IT. The need to get at, and work down, the IT backlog is a big deal and SOA helps enable this. I think that rules do also and have blogged about this before in terms of your value backlog.
Bruce is very optimistic about how SOA and other trends are going to drive more software innovation in the next few years than ever before. He thinks that the SOA and BPM/composite applications approach will replace the large enterprise application. I think that the need for decision automation as part of making services have intra-service agility, as part of making a web 2.0 interface truly support self-service and to make declarative, business-user centric development a reality!
I am speaking at 2:45pm on "Automating High-Volume Business Decisions within an SOA"