Last week, I wrote about the ties that bind SOA, mashups and integration. This week, SOA World presents a new twist on the discussion.
Mashups and SOA, Rakesh Saha argues, will make integration more personal and situational.
Saha is lead developer for the Oracle Fusion Middleware Integration Platform. In the article, he's offering a peek at Oracle's vision for an enterprise mashup platform that allows end users to create mashups without programming. Of course, the platform will be based on SOA.
"The framework is not a replacement of traditional enterprise information integration, but an extension that makes integration personal to users."
The practical applications of personalized integration he suggests are simple, but valuable: End users could to do things like integrate calendar meetings with e-mails, spreadsheets or other business-critical documents. Sales people might use mashups to overlay sales data on maps.
These aren't projects that IT or the enterprise as a whole would value -- and yet, such end-user projects bring value to the entire organization by quickly helping employees do their jobs more efficiently.
And that's just guessing at how end users might use such a platform. As Saha points out:
"The main idea of enterprise mashups is to shift the power of the creation of business applications from the providers of the services -- the IT department -- to the consumers of the services -- enterprise users."
Of course, the "dream" has always been to build systems that allow end users to create their own technology solutions. But as Saha shows, enterprise mashups, SOA and rich internet applications are quickly making this concept seem less like a flying car and more like an advancement within throwing distance.
It's an exciting idea -- though I suspect some will find it frightening, as well.
Saha's lengthy article goes into much more detail about the potential for a SOA-based enterprise mashup platform, including what it could mean for Service-Oriented Business Applications. It's well worth reading.