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Business Transformation in Action

Joe McKendrick

Extreme Transaction Processing -- for Very Busy SOAs

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Extreme Transaction Processing... the term alone evokes images of massively huge streams of data roaring through enterprise applications. Like the huge turbines that capture the raw energy of thousands of tons of water surging each second through the hydroelectric dams of northern Quebec and Ontario.

The ability to capture huge data flows is what's been powering business at a leading Canadian online bookstore site, AbeBooks.com, which has harnessed the power of XTP as part of its service oriented architecture. In recent posts, Rich Seeley documented the AbeBooks project, how it works, and what it means.

Rich reported that the site, which processes more than 30,000 orders a day and updates millions of titles in real time across its inventory, employs Oracle Coherence, a distributed in-memory data grid designed for XTP environments. The platform automatically partitions data in-memory across multiple servers -- making data access lightening fast compared to the usual approach of reading and writing data from disks.

XTP and its sibling, complex event processing (CEP), are potentially killer apps for SOA, Rich observes.

Abebooks.com manages a database of more than 110 million new, used, rare, and out-of-print books via Web services links to 13,500 booksellers. Previously, transactions hit the back-end databases directly. Leith Painter, manager of development at AbeBooks, said the next step toward an SOA implementation is to put the Oracle Fusion component on its own tier so that it can be used by other applications support the online marketplace for books.

"We're in the first stages of design and implementation of service-oriented architecture. We're sponsoring it from an IT level. We've got some initial services we've developed in a design phase, and we're currently developing design principles."

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In this blog (formerly known as "SOA in Action"), Joe McKendrick examines how BPM and related business and IT approaches can promote business transformation.

Joe McKendrick

Joe McKendrick is an author and independent analyst who tracks the impact of information technology on management and markets. View more

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