SOA Talk


May 5, 2009  4:46 PM

Steve Mills on Oracle and Java

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

At an IBM press conference at the Impact Smart SOA Conference 2009 in Las Vegas the topic turned – briefly, albeit – to Oracle’s purchase of Sun.

Many have wondered about the future of Java in Oracle’s hands. What does IBM software leader Steve Mills think?

“I don’t believe we are going to see a fundamental change. I don’t have a concern,” said Mills. “Oracle obviously becomes the new steward, if you will.”

IBM has been said to be frustrated by the pace of standards related to Java. Mills said Oracle has felt those frustrations too. “Oracle has been among those thinking Sun could move more effectively,” he said.

Some individuals voiced concern about Sun in IBM’s portfolio; reportedly, the companies seriously pursued a merger that did not happen. Still others worried about Sun in Oracle’s suite. Mills voiced no such distress.

Mills pointed to the fact that many companies licensee Java as a leavening factor for Java going forward.

“We think the forces at play in the market will keep Java as something standard and consistent and widely deployed,” he told those gathered at the Impact press conference.

April 29, 2009  6:50 PM

Transactions are the currency for SOA management

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

AmberPoint has been busy, announcing support this week for Microsoft BizTalk Server 2009, and, earlier in the month, announcing integration with IBM WebSphere DataPower. We talked with the company recently. Continued »


April 28, 2009  5:59 PM

Facebook APIs add Activity Streaming

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

RSS and Atom are among the most useful elements to emerge from the XML and Web services revolution that occurred over the last 10 years. Who’d have thunk it? RSS seemed a small part of an XML initially, but has since become incredibly ubiquitous. Now, the world of syndication may be poised for another leap forward. Continued »


April 27, 2009  6:20 PM

Watching the Feds pick a CTO and CIO

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Over the years, the Federal government has had considerable influence in seeking to define the role of Enterprise Architect. As a new administration gets rolling in Washington, there is some chance that its approach to hiring a new chief federal CIO and CTO will affect future trends in EA. The CIO and CTO positions have been filled with Vivek Kundra and Aneesh Chopra, respectively. Seers of the tea leaves of technology have pondered those choices, and hit the blogs running. Continued »


April 23, 2009  5:51 PM

Reza Rahman on Oracle-Sun

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

A recent piece SearchSOA.com ran on the mega merger of Oracle and Sun heard from a number of users who saw a better competitive situation with Sun in the Oracle camp, as opposed to being the IBM camp. The takes are not all positive, however.

“I am not terribly happy with it,” said Reza Rahman, Independent Consultant and EJB specialist. “I would rather have seen a Sun-HP merger.”

“Sun merging with Oracle really cuts down the competitiveness in the application server market specifically and the software development market generally,” he said.

Some of Rahman’s concerns revolve around Glassfish, a Java server implementation that Sun appeared finally ready to run with.

“This basically takes Glassfish off the table. I expect it will basically be assimilated into the Oracle portfolio,” Rahman told me.

Still, Rahman concedes, Sun was in trouble, and, in turn, Java was in trouble.

He said: “This is preferable to the present situation where we have a weak Sun. It is just not a good situation as far as competiveness and innovation in the Java space goes.” It was not good to rely on a company with weak resources to lead the efforts for Java-based standards.


April 22, 2009  8:14 PM

OSGi angle on Snorkle (Sun-Oracle) deal

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Communicated recently with Eric Newcomer about Oracle and Sun, which is big news this week. Parts of our e-mail conversation are included in the SearchSOA.com story entitled “Java side of Sun seen strengthened by Oracle buy.”

There are a lot of questions yet to be resolved in this ongoing story – What will happen to Java? Where for art thou, MySQL? Will Oracle become a hardware company? Whither Netbeans? And so on.

Eric Newcomer, in his role of OSGi champion, has an additional question: How will this merger affect OSGi? We have featured OSGi more than a bit on both this blog and on the SearchSOA.com site, and therefore are glad to share some of Eric’s thoughts on OSGi in the light of the proposed mega merger here. He suggests he may clear up some murkiness on the Sun side that previously seemed to be out and about.

He writes:

“Oracle has been a strong supporter of OSGi. They are well represented on the enterprise expert group that I co-chair, and one concrete action I expect is that they will move to eliminate Sun’s formerly schizophrenic attitude toward OSGi for Java modularity.

Sun had supported OSGi through its adoption in GlassFish, but had also competed with it in Project Jigsaw and to some extend in the JSR 294 work as well.  Among other things this created uncertainty over the role of OSGi in Java’s future, especially for enterprise applications.  Given Oracle’s strong participation in the OSGi enterprise effort to date I expect this acquisition will have a positive impact on the OSGi enterprise initiative.”


April 21, 2009  3:33 PM

The quest for granular SOA services

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

I learned from a writing teacher who was not a writer at all – he was an engineer. He took an engineer’s approach to writing – or maybe I should say a reverse-engineering approach. That is: He looked at the best examples of the type of writing he was pursuing, analyzed them, and codified their practice. For example, in his class, you weren’t supposed to use forms of the verb phrase ‘to be’. Well, you could, but a point would be deducted each time you did. Oh, how the students moaned. And in turn, he would intone, “When you leave this class, you no longer need employ this method.”
 
He came to his method through the study of failure – his own failure to succeed at writing. As a youth and into college, he’d dutifully hand-in his English compositions and the teacher would scribble “Awk” – for awkward – all over the paper. “They’d tell me what I did was wrong,” he told us, “but they’d never show me how to fix it.” As a result, when he became a teacher of technical writing, he provided clear and fairly strict rules of writing.
 
All of which brings us to the issues of the day: What are truly services? How granular must they be? And how precisely granular should they appear? This is essential to success with SOA, but the literature merely says “Write properly composed services” without providing any guidance on how to do this.

In a guest column on SearchSOA.com, Douglas Barry has given a bit of such guidance for those who would create services. Give it a read and comment.

Related SOA development information
Using atomicity to gain SOA granularity – SearchSOA.com


April 20, 2009  3:56 PM

Oracle buys Sun for $7.4B

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Database software giant Oracle has reached a definitive merger agreement to purchase Solaris OS and Java originator Sun Microsystems for about $7.4 billion. The move follows reports of a breakdown in merger discussions between Sun and IBM that would have set the price of Sun at $6.5 billion.

If completed, the transaction would vault Oracle into the computer market, one that it has patently avoided during its history. It also would enhance the company’s position in Java software, a field in which it gained additional prominence with its 2008 purchase of Java application server maker BEA Systems.

The deal would also place the commercial version of the open-source MySQL database under Oracle’s control. Sun bought MySQL originator MySQL AB in Janurary 2008.

The deal was approved by Sun’s board of directors. In a statement, Sun said it expected the deal to close this summer, subject to Sun stockholder approval, regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.


April 6, 2009  3:49 PM

IBM-Sun talks on rocks? “Sun being Sun?”

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

It is opening day for baseball in the U.S. and blogger Dana Blakenhorn finds a suitable metaphor to describe the latest reported dealings of Sun and IBM. Last month, the Wall Street Journal reported the two computer companies were near an agreement on a merger.

The rumor now is that a faction in Sun (one led by former CEO Scott McNealy) is pushing for more money from Big Blue. Further rumors have IBM reducing its offer. This all puts the proposed deal in something less than limbo.

Blogger Blakenhorn likens the situation to the Los Angeles Dodgers’ off-season negotiations with Manny Ramierez – a talented hitter of the baseball whose self-esteem seems to know no upper boundaries.

Over the winter, Ramierez walked away from a lucrative deal with the Dodgers, only to find there was not a wider market for his skills.

Eventually, Ramierez signed with the Dodgers for a deal somewhat less rich.

Blakenhorn suggests a similar outcome may yet transpire in the negotiations of IBM and Sun.

Related computer industry news
IBM and Sun reportedly in merger talks – SearchSOA.com, Mar. 18, 2009
If McNealy thinks he is Manny Ramirez, has another think coming – ZDNet Linux and Open Source blog


April 3, 2009  8:22 PM

SOA service managers wanted

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Ovum analyst Tony Baer reaffirms the link between SOA and IT Service Management in a blog post – entitled ”What’s a Service? Who’s Responsible?”

He talks briefly about the role ITIL can play, and in more detail about an emerging notion that a ”Service Manager” role may have a place in the modern orgainization. He considers the notion of who today is responsible for ensuring services meet business needs and that infrastrucutre is adquate to support those services.

Baer asks if what is needed is ”a sort of uber role that ensures that the service
(1) responds to a bona fide business need
(2) is consistent with enterprise architectural standards and does not needlessly duplicate what is already in place, and
(3) won’t break IT infrastructure or physical delivery.

This is a thoughtful piece. Clearly, the sobriquet ”Service Manager” may need some tuning, as the title seems equally apt for an individual charged with scheduling oil changes or refrigerator repairs.

Related ITILness
”What’s a Service? Who’s Responsible?” – OnStrategies blog


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