While the value of any application is directly related to the number of other applications it is integrated with, there is still a tendency to develop applications in isolation. Data integration is presumed to be something that takes place only after the application is developed using a completely different set of tools.
CloudBees’ acquisition of Foxweave, a provider of what CloudBees calls an app-centric approach to data integration services that includes tools for both synchronizing and migrating data between applications, will change the way data integration is managed in the cloud.
According to Steve Harris, senior vice president of products for CloudBees, data integration as a service should be a natural ingredient with any application running on top of a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) offering that CloudBees built for Java applications. Rather than having to invoke a separate service that introduces network latency challenges along with additional cost, Harris says it’s going to be far more efficient to invoke data integration services on the same platform upon which the application is running.
As part of an effort to concentrate the data mapping and integration services, Harris says CloudBees intends to fold the data integration capabilities provided by FoxWeave into the core CloudBees PaaS offering, which organizations can opt to deploy in a private cloud running on premise or in a third-party data center.
The way the enterprise approaches application development has been fundamentally changing with the evolution of PaaS. It’s only natural that as an extension of that process, the way organizations approach data integration will also change.
Of course, that change is going to introduce any number of cultural issues related to how application development and data integration are managed today. Anything that gives developers more control over the data that an application needs to access is generally going to be a good thing, not only in terms of deriving value from a new application, but also in creating applications that the business can more effectively use from day one of deployment.