If the strategic architectural direction of an enterprise is to migrate toward a
service-oriented architecture using Web services and an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB), which
technologies, programming languages and platforms should that company begin to manage out of its
application portfolio to enable, not inhibit, moving to an SOA?
ZapThink introduced a vision of the SOA Implementation Framework (SOAIF) in our Service Orientation Market Trends report. The SOAIF envisions a comprehensive framework that provides all the technology that enterprises need to build and run an SOA -- process, management, security, modeling and more. In fact, as enterprises look to implement SOAs and vendors work to produce solutions that enable such architectures, three separate approaches to integrating disparate, heterogeneous information and systems in the enterprise are in the process of converging to provide an optimal implementation of an SOA -- one that meets the requirements for loosely coupled, coarse-grained, asynchronous services.
ZapThink believes the answer lies in a convergence of ESB, service-oriented integration, and
business process management (BPM) approaches. The message-oriented, loosely coupled approach of
ESBs provides an optimal base on top of which to run the loosely coupled, coarse-grained services
implemented in an SOI. BPM solutions provide the process-driven guidance necessary to ensure that
they compose fine-grained services into real, run-time business processes. Through the combination
of these approaches, companies can move toward the vision of software that integrates
This was first published in November 2004