Announcing the Union of SOA and Web 2.0

Loraine Lawson

It was bound to happen: SOA and Web 2.0 are being linked in the tech press.


When I say "linked," I know it sounds a little tabloid-esque. That's not an accident. It's because so much of what I'm reading about SOA and Web 2.0 talks about these technologies in much the same lingo that the National Enquirer and other tabloids dished about Brad Pitt leaving Jennifer Aniston for Angelina Jolie.


Don't believe me? Witness the following:


"We also delve into the ongoing heavy breathing between SOA and Web 2.0... Is this mashup of SOA and Web 2.0 a weekend dalliance? Or a love affair for life?" -- eCommerce Times


"Two of the industry's hottest buzzwords are combining to fuel one of the hottest emerging trends in the industry -- the use of Web 2.0 technologies acting as front ends to SOA back-end environments." -- eWEEK.


See what I mean?


Well, I suppose it's understandable. After all, much like Brad and Angelina, it was only a matter of time before SOA and Web 2.0 got together. So, to continue the entertainment theme, I offer you:


Top 5 Things You Need to Know about SOA and Web 2.0


5: SOA is a great architecture for creating mashups. Mashups are essentially bits of independent code -- APIs, but it could just as easily be services -- that are linked together. Theoretically, you don't need a programmer to create them, though at this point, most mashups do require a bit of coding to work. Theoretically, business users could tap services to build their own mashups. That would give you a more agile business, since business users could create apps on the fly -- and without IT central -- to address immediate business needs. But with freedom, comes responsibility, and major security and governance headaches.


4: eWEEK quotes Dan Hushon, the CTO of EMC's Grid Business Unit, as saying Web 2.0 technologies could make some WS-* stacks irrelevant. Goodbye SOAP, hello REST -- and its associated security flaws.


3: Think SOA governance is a headache? Wait until you add Web 2.0, technologies that are communal and social by nature and therefore resist -- nay, thwart -- governance. One company, Nexaweb Technologies, thinks it will solve this problem by "establishing an enterprise Web 2.0 SOA ecosystem," according to eWeek. As I understand it, the idea is to establish a strong SOA governance framework and then add existing Web 2.0 capabilities to that environment. I'm calling it "governance by affiliation."


2: Users are more likely to ask for Web 2.0 technologies than SOA or Web services, according to the CEO of Inkriti, a technology consulting company and provider of Web 2.0 solutions for customer-centric e-business. Plus, mashups can be deployed quickly, giving you a hand-up with that SOA ROI. So, hitching SOA to Web 2.0 may not be such a bad thing for SOA, even if you do nearly go into convulsions just at the mention of Anything 2.0. Think about it -- that's all I'm saying.


And the number one thing you need to know about SOA and Web 2.0...


There are some really cool, exciting business reasons for this alliance. eWEEK relates how LeapFrog -- better known for its alphabet-reciting, singing frogs and tadpoles for children -- is using Web 2.0 and SOA technologies to create products that interact with its web site. Its pentop computer system, called Fly Fusion, downloads content and educational material. Still, you've got at least a year and a half to two years before you see widespread use of Web 2.0 and SOA on mainstream web sites or products, according to the eWeek article.


And hopefully by then, we also won't be reading about Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie every time we go to the grocery store.

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