Thursday, May 29, 2008

Gorillazation of SOA

Gorillazation of SOA
by Burc Oral

There are many ways to encounter the competition in the market place. Among my observations are many: leveraging product or brand characteristics like first-to-the market, best-of-the-breed, cheapest, etc.

I would like to add another one: Gorillazation. What is that?

Simple. Make it such a big, impossible endevaour that entry to the market is deterred. Show that you need a 800 pound gorilla to do the task. It must be complicated because we need humengous infrastructure, development teams, operations etc.

So, just happed that SOA was among the victims of gorillazaton to the point of utter complexity with dozen of standards which are still incomplete. What happened to KISS!

It was kept in the dungeons with the CORBA and was purely technical. This "technical" aspect dubbed SOA as Web Services and made it add a few pounds on the gorilla.

Less business awareness--because it is the techie gorilla-- is an effective way to keep competition away.

How about cooepetitive business environment: compete and cooperate. Our financial industry has been doing for a long time. Every penny eventually circulates across many financial institutions not because it likes to do but it is in its nature. So, fnancial organizations, for instance, communicate through clearing houses, check fro credit, transfer in-kind, etc. These are all commoditized services.

SOA is nether a complex beast nor a 800-pound gorilla. It is true that it tunes differently for many people (See SOA Many Things). When communicated well, Showever,OA can be easily understood and can gain alot of fans at the corner office.

Consider the relation between two verticals: time&attendance (T&A) and point of sale(PoS) . An employee entering her id at a point of sale (PoS) terminal can easily be used to verify attendance. This inherent relationship is the tip of a very powerful interplay of systems and can be expressed as a series of services between T&A and PoS. Often, the vendors are different in an organization. And, more frequently, after mergers and acquisitions, an organization can have multiple systems of T&A and PoS. This where business stakeholders do not want to incur costs due to rigidity of the applications and look for solutions that are pluggable and friendly to the world. Service-Orientedness with its implementation agnosticism becomes the valley of comfort.
Now, while there is a fierce competition in T&A and PoS vendors, they must talk to each other in order exchange information. Cooperation starts well with

When business stakeholders contemplate how to make systems work together, there is no room for gorillas!

Next, we will talk about democratization of business interplay as a direct out come of SOA.

Burc Oral


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