I have something important to tell you about APIs, but first you have to pinky-promise to stay with me through the end.
Here’s why: I’m going to have to use the taboo term “SOA” to make the point, and you’re probably going to want to run away.
Okay. Ready: APIs are essentially the same thing as SOA…. Or are they? (Raises eyebrow while petting hairless cat, ala Dr. Evil.)
There are some very good arguments that they’re more or less the same thing.
APIs, or application programming interfaces, are the main way we access SaaS and other cloud-based services, especially on mobile devices. It turns out, APIs are almost always built with REST, which is one way to build services for SOA. Plus, as I’ve mentioned previously, many SOA management vendors are now shifting into API management.
But does that make them “basically” the same thing? ZDNet blogger Joe McKendrick, who focuses on SOA issues, has been writing about both sides of this issue. What I take away from his coverage is that — yes, they have some things in common but they’re not really the same thing, exactly.
This matters for three reasons:
That’s an important takeaway for IT managers and CIOs, since with some cross-team training, your mobile strategy team can benefit from what you learned with SOA.