SOA Software Adds Governance Support for WCF Within Microsoft .NET

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It seems SOA Software is busy adding SOA governance support for various frameworks and platforms - which is good, since one point of SOA is to allow services to function in heterogeneous environments.


This week, the SOA governance solution provider revealed it has certified Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) within the Microsoft .NET Framework as a governed service platform. This basically means SOA Software's solutions can govern services developed using WCF to ensure they will talk and play well with other commercial "SOA platforms" - their words, not mine - including IBM's WebSphere, SAP NetWeaver, BEA, Oracle, Red Hat and other open source providers, according to the press release.


In a separate release, the company also said its Repository Manager 6.0 can now support Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 Team Foundation Server with an add-in. According to the press release, the new tool gives Repository Manager users "...the flexibility to specify artifacts (both project/solution-based and individual files) by label or by version for inclusion within Repository Manager-governed software assets." The tool will also help .NET developers and architects collaborate on applications.


In May, SOA Software announced plans to certify SAP NetWeaver as a Governed Service Platform.


In other integration news: BPM and SOA Testing in One. Green Hat, which sells consulting and automated testing products, made an interesting announcement this week. The company announced a product that automates testing for both SOA and BPM -- and in the official press release, it claimed this is the first product to do both.


I tried to validate that, but had no luck. It looks like iTKO LISA can test SOA services for use with TIBCO's BPM offering. Coincidentally -- I guess - ITKO also announced this week plans to partner with SOA Software, so that its LISA Testing, Validation and Virtualization suite will integrate with SOA Software's Policy Manager and Service Manager solutions.


Unfortunately, I was unable to find anything that explained Green Hat's new offering or clarifying how it might differ from something like iTKO Lisa.


At this point, Green Hat's product only supports TIBCO's iProcess, according to the press release. Green Hat noted that the addition of the BPM capabilities meant customers would be able to test all aspects of their SOA implementation, including exception handling and manual processes.


ICC/SOA Centers of Excellence Can Save You Money. Did you know you could save an average of 30 percent on application integration projects and data interface development time and costs -- all by forming either an integration competency center (ICC) or a service-oriented architecture center of excellence? So says Gartner, in a recent press release.


Gartner found integration centers of excellence can cut maintenance costs 20 percent and achieve a 25 percent reuse of integration components.


According to the press release, integration projects typically cost anywhere from $250,000 to $1,000,000, so you could potentially save $100,000 or more.


Unfortunately - albeit not surprisingly - most companies will never see those savings because of "of insufficient sponsorship and other organization execution problems," Gartner warns.


Gartner isn't the only one singing the praises of the ICC. Informatica recently asked companies with an ICC to rate the success of their ICC on a scale of 1-5, with 5 being the highest. Over 75 percent of those surveyed gave their ICC an average score of 4, citing cost savings, economies of scale, and improved time-to-market on new data integration projects.


If you're not sure what an ICC should do -- or how to pay for one -- check out this blog post from April, which answers those very questions.


Mad over mashups? Check out this Webinar. If you'd like to learn more about mashups - and how they can help you squeeze business value from your SOA - you might want to sign up for this free online presentation by Tim Zonca, who bears the somewhat awkward title of "Master Masher and Director of Product Marketing" at Serena Software. Zonca will discuss SOA, the role of Web services in building applications, and how business workers can use mashups to build applications using a drag-and-drop interface -- one assumes using tools sold by Serena. Frankly, it sounds a bit hyped, but you never know. It's scheduled for Thursday, June 26, 2008, at 12 p.m. EDT or 9 a.m. PST.