SOA Talk


January 13, 2009  12:41 PM

Jeff Papows in at SOA governance house WebLayers

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Industry veteran Jeff Papows will take the helm at WebLayers, the Cambridge, Mass.-based maker of SOA governance policy enforcement and automation software.The move comes at the same time the company announces it has secured a new $3-million round of equity funding from Ascent Venture Partners, Cedar Fund and Veritas Venture Partners. Continued »

January 12, 2009  11:00 PM

New AmberPoint suite links to WCF and Dublin

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Last month Microsoft re-confirmed aspects of its BizTalk server roadmap, which includes a specialized Windows ‘SOA’ server known as ‘Dublin.’ Included in the announcement was word of ESB and SOA guidance from the company that takes the form of patterns, or best practices, for customers going the SOA route.

A bit overlooked at the time was word that governance software maker AmberPoint had followed a demo at Microsoft’s November PDC expo with a formal announcement that it would extend its governance and management capabilities for the Microsoft platform.

Dublin represents Microsoft’s latest enhancements to its Windows Server application server, according to Ed Horst, Chief Marketing Officer, AmberPoint. “Like the latest version of WCF, Dublin is built from the ground up to support distributed composite applications,” Horst told SearchSOA.com in an e-mail message.

AmberPoint’s part is to govern the resulting composite applications to ensure they are compliant with management policies for such things as security and service levels, as well as to manage the transactions flowing across these federated systems, Horst said. New links with Microsoft’s WCF means developers won’t need to hand-code SOA management capabilities as they build WCF apps.


January 7, 2009  9:39 PM

Capt’s log: IBM closes deal to purchase optimization house iLog

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

IBM has closed the deal to purchase established logistics and optimization software vendor iLog. The purchase, at a price now estimated at $340 million, was originally announced last July. iLog will become a part of IBM’s WebSphere operation.

Over the years, Ilog fashioned a unique potpourri of a business rule engine line, optimization and logistical supply chain management lines, and a front-end component or ‘visualization’ software line that spans both the .NET and non-.NET worlds.

While the rules engine can be expected to garner initial attention, fitting neatly atop IBM’s Java application servers, the visualization offerings may surprise.

According to IBM’s Sandy Carter, the company has already been able to demonstrate use of the iLog visualization components, WebSphere and IBM’s BPM suites working together. Carter also sees the various iLog optimization tools greatly enhancing IBM BPM efforts.

This is a good buy for IBM. iLog has installed itself on the global optimization stage. Optimization may be a ‘bright’ spot as companies rejigger business plans in the face of global downturn. Its other parts are innovative and have added new potential as they become part of the larger IBM portfolio.


January 6, 2009  3:40 PM

I unit test, therefore I am

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Unit testing is one of the essential elements that arose along with the agile design movement. Any self respecting developer now does unit tests, or at least the developer tells the architect that unit tests were done. Clearly, signing a manifesto does not mean a developer knows how to do unit tests correctly. Unit testing may be one of the great cases of lip service, today.

With SOA, unit testing takes on a whole new tenor. Composite applications may always be in flux. The fact that an application integrator is not in charge of all SOA system elements is inescapable. [see  Application performance management today, part 3: SOA performance - SearchSoftwareQuality.com]

With AJAX, unit testing takes a whole new tenor, again. AJAX – often the delivery mechanism for SOA – of course, is about more than JavaScript. Typically modern JavaScript appears as part of a framework. JavaScript is used more in environments such as DOM. Means have arisen to bring object-oriented qualities to work horse JavaScript. Now, mashups are appearing as an ultimate enterprise representation of AJAX. And unit testing of such applications is challenging.

A good look at some of the issues is provided by Nicholas C. Zakas on the Yahoo! User Interface Blog, which is all about tools and tricks from the Yahoo libraries. He discussed JavaScript Unit testing and the DOM. He discusses where functional tests outpace unit tests in AJAX undertakings.

Related SOA test/performance info
Application performance management today, part 3: SOA performance - SearchSoftwareQuality.com
Writing Effective JavaScript Unit Tests with YUI Test – YUIblog


January 6, 2009  2:18 PM

If one SOA succeeds is SOA still dead? What if it succeeds and fails?

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

With all the blog enabled scuttlebutt ‘failed SOA,’ it is interesting to look at a SOA success story, albeit one that failed. Read on, Grasshopper! Continued »


January 5, 2009  3:58 PM

Web services to turn on televisions

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Word out of this year’s Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas is that Yahoo will be making a Widget Development Kit (WDK) available to developers on a limited basis. The kit helps developers create JavaScript- and XML-based applications that run on top of normal television pictures and are navigable via TV remote control. Yahoo made the announcement together with Samsung Electronics. The plan is to create a new Internet-based service to Samsung televisions starting in the spring of 2009.

Related “TV Web services” info
Yahoo Connected TV – Yahoo


December 29, 2008  4:53 PM

Microformats for fast REST APIs?

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Microformats have been described as a set open data format standards for structured blogging and web content publishing. They have been tried out, for example, in the realm of XHTML. One tenet of the microformat movement has been to try to work with existing architectures and patterns, sometimes described as ‘paving the cow paths’. Continued »


December 22, 2008  12:26 PM

How Green was my SOA?

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

As part of a large company-wide drive, IBM even promotes SOA as a play in the area of Green (energy-saving) computing. The company just released a so-called SOA Sandbox project online trial that provides instructions for building an app that provides energy usage information to end-users. Various IBM modeling tools can be used in such initiatives. We recently discussed other issues of enterprise architecture, and how it can serve in varying SOA capacities. It’s a little ditty with charming title, ”On establishing the link between the business and SOA with modeling.”


December 18, 2008  2:04 PM

SoaML targets top-down, bottom up or meet-in-the-middle modeling

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

Signs are beginning to appear pointing the way to SoaML, an OMG-backed specification meant to bring a new type of modeling capability to the service-oriented world.

SoaML’s goal is to provide SOA modeling of services within UML, without making changes to UML. As part of that, the spec seeks to support services architectures where different parties use multiple services and where services can be defined to contain other services. Mappings to business process specs are also in store, notably BPDM and BPMN.

Anyone concerned about an over-bearing top-down modeling regimen in SoaML can take heart in its claimed adherence to either top-down, bottom up or meet-in-the-middle modeling.

The SoaML has been percolating for awhile, with more details due in 2009. Just recently, a wiki of sorts has been formed for all things SoaML. A complete working doc is available as a PDF from OMG. And for the over-the-top would-be SoaML enthusiast there is a background feature on the making of the SoaML logo on the Yaya-Colour blog.


December 16, 2008  3:53 PM

Bruce Silver on BPMN

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

We have heard the story of aligning IT and development before, haven’t we? That the story is told over and over does not make it a bad story per se. Some stories bear retelling. If the details change over time, that is helpful.

I mention this while perusing one of the more useful BPM-related blogs. That is Bruce Silver’s BPMS Watch. There have been significant changes in BPM in recent years, and a new notations for workflow description are among them. Silver’s site, and his accompanying columns for the BPMInstitute.org cover this and other ground quite well.

Recently Silver wrote about BPMN as ‘the first serious attempt to provide a common visual language for process description shared by business and IT.’ Well, I don’t know. Journalists very seldom call something the ‘first’ of anything. It is a sure way to get mail from an irate someone who built something before someone else. But irate mail’s a good thing, especially on the blogosphere, so I will let this stand, although I’d have to add that I did hear UML described this way more than once upon a time.

Related BPMN info
Bruce Silver blog – www.brsilver.com
Bruce Silver on BPMN – www.brsilver.com


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