SOAsaurus Shrugged

It’s tempting. It’s all too easy to be the first to predict that SOA is dead. I’m the first to admit that I’m eager helping pick out the plot and the right size coffin.

But let’s be thankful before we greedily start to try to split the inheritance among our dysfunctional family of ESBs, Data Integration, Data Services, Governance, BPM, BAM, EDA, Grid/Cloud, Web 2.0, Business Intelligence, and many other forgotten 2nd cousins in the open-source tools market.

Leave it to these down-trodden times to strike at those that are already ‘trodding’ in the trough of disallusionment. Let’s be nice. But I do agree that we should get back to the basics, or as David Linthicum encourages, "back to data” in this blog response to SOA being dead:

It may be a much better approach to architecture to get your master data management and data integration house in order first, not thinking about more complex architectures, and then move up the stack from there. Indeed, if data worked better in many organizations, the architecture would naturally be more valuable and agile as well.

I agree that data is essential for companies to be effective – efficiencies in Business Intelligence, Master Data Management may take first priority in today's tough times.

And while I am gigglingly entertained by Anne Thomas Manes comic depiction of SOAsaurus being wiped out by the ‘economic meteor’, I think a better analogy is warranted. Saying SOA is dead is almost equivalent of saying that the entire global automotive industry is dead. Sure there are some major car companies that blundered with the wrong approach and forget to consider alternative approaches, the same goes for SOA.

I agree with David Chappell when he writes:

Just to let folks be aware that SOA, the architecture-formerly-known-as-SOA, and the architecture-until-recently-known-as-SOA is alive-and-well, I gathered up some success stories that show tangible ROI from recent SOA projects across the industry, which include some Oracle customers.

I would argue that SOA has have become born into countless technology spin-offs, best practices, use cases that have all benefited tremendously, perhaps at the expense of the SOA name. Even Data Integration, which actually came first before EAI/SOA with its ETL, has immensely improved its outlook thanks to Data Services and the new emerging re-births that have occurred in Data Warehousing, Business Intelligence and Master Data Management.

I believe that the fruits of SOA will in fact live on through these technologies. The ones I am eager to work on are around next generation Data Integration, Business Intelligence and Master Data Management.

Meanwhile, don't worry. SOAsaurus has a pretty hard shell. He's going to be around for a long long time.


Comments:

Great post, Dain!

Posted by Bob Rhubart on January 11, 2009 at 10:22 PM PST #

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