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Business Transformation in Action

Joe McKendrick

Latest SOA Roundup from ebizQ: SCA Warning, BPM Help, Event Processing

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In one of his latest effervescent blog posts, Michael Poulin talked about the often confusing relationship between service component architecture (SCA) and SOA. Michael issued a warning about "another huge ambiguity," noting that SCA "is not a specification for implementation of service-oriented architecture but rather a good specification of component-oriented architecture with Java or WSDL interfaces, i.e. it is Interface-utilizing Component Architecture. SCA is about components, not about services."

Shahid Shah talked about the growing role of SOA in healthcare, and an upcoming conference in Chicago devoted exclusively to the topic.

In my latest SOA in Action blog, I discussed several working examples of SOA in action demonstrated at recent conferences sponsored by IBM and Software AG, including ways companies such as CenterPoint Energy and Coca-Cola sold service orientation to the business.

Brenda Michelson provided follow-up insights to a roundtable on event processing she and I just conducted with Progress/Apama's David Olson. Brenda provided further commentary on our opening line of discussion, the relationship between complex event processing and business intelligence. "Even if your active information tier (or CEP implementation) doesn't initially extend to business intelligence, you are still improving business intelligence input, and one would hope, output," she said.

How does business process management (BPM) help build the business case for SOA?
Greg Carter, CTO and executive vice president of product development for Metastorm, explained how today's
challenges -- from tight budgets to uncertain ROI -- can be addressed with business process management (BPM) methodologies and software, an integral technology to effective service orientation.

In our weekly interactive forum, participants debated whether SOA implementations built around "traditional" Web services standards (SOAP, WSDL, WS-*) should be distinguished from more "generic" SOA invoking other standards and protocols. The general consensus among this lively group appears to be that SOA is not about any particular group of standards. As contributor Niel Ward-Dutton put it: "SOA is an architectural style. Interoperability is vital - because (as JP Morgenthal says) SOA is a system-level attribute - but use of particular Web Services standards is not critical to the 'SOA-ness' of a system."

John Michelson also put the whole argument in perspective: "I'd wager that if you insisted on 100% compliance to any specific standard, you'd have to throw out 99.999% of the world's services!" That's probably a very safe bet for your money, John!

In news items posted over the past week, we reported how Cisco unveiled Cisco Unified Service Delivery, a solution to help service providers build a foundation for cloud services, while they transform the delivery of consumer and business applications to any place and device. We also covered WSO2's announcement of the launch of WSO2 Data Services 2.0, a re-architected open source WSO2 data services product. We also covered SOA Software's announcement that its SOA Software Policy Manager 6.0 and SOA Software Service Manager 6.0 solutions have achieved SAP certification as powered by the SAP NetWeaver technology platform.

Around the Web, we covered we covered Matt Rothera's comments on how to enable Complex Event Processing to "Empower the Business, but Keep Control." We also surfaced Dave Linthicum's comments on whether SOA is "Dead or Just in 'Phase 2'?" We also captured Steve Craggs' comments on "Why Do So Many SOA Adopters Moan About Low Reuse Levels?"

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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