People in the media and analyst firms spend a lot of time thinking and writing about what effects various technologies will have on the way enterprises make use of IT. Sometimes these speculations seem to be nothing more than interesting (or uninteresting) blue sky thinking, with little consequence.
For IT vendors, however, these questions are deadly serious.
This week, Dale Vile of Freeform Dynamics publicly speculated about whether SOA would ultimately mean the death of the packaged enterprise application. He didn't think so, and apparently neither does Oracle. While Oracle is pushing its Fusion middleware, it hasn't exactly closed the door on its relational database business. SAP and Microsoft are trying to have it both ways. While continuing to strengthen their packaged CRM applications, they're using standards and technologies associated with SOA to do it.