Gartner's Application Architecture, Development & Integration Summit focuses on important aspects of enterprise architecture from the nitty-gritty developer level all the way up to the top strategic level. In 2011, Gartner focuses on mobile Web applications and the social Web as new opportunities for the IT organization. Other important areas of interest include emerging cloud computing technologies, integrating SOA within the enterprise, legacy application modernization, application portfolio management and of course delivering greater business value and agility.
Join us for a look back at what Gartner has brought us in years past and stay tuned as we bring you coverage from this year's event as the discussions unfold.
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Coverage from Gartner AADI Summit 2011
At the Application Architecture, Development & Integration Summit 2011, Gartner's vice president Jeff Schulman explained that application development is about to change. The technologies that are driving enterprise architecture shifts are cloud computing and mobile application development, but in-memory computing, event processing and other relatively new technology will also be part of the mix, Schulman forecasted in an introductory keynote.
SOA expert Anne Manes explained to an audience at the AADI Summit that application infrastructure and architectures must change to support a new variety of client interfaces and an abundance of open Web-based programmable interfaces. According to Manes, much of the recent progress that organizations are seeing in maturing service-oriented architectures can be attributed to the realization that SOA is not something obtained by purchasing a product. Rather, "SOA is really about the design model - how you design systems. In the last few years we've seen people focus on architecture. The principles behind service orientation are starting to sink in. More people are doing it as part of their development process, and that is a good thing," she said.
From one SOA test expert’s perspective, 2011 saw a notable rise in agile development and related open source test software. Meanwhile, middleware testing continues to grow more complicated. “What I saw this year was a rise of open source testing as an alternative to proprietary testing, as well as the continuation of service-oriented architecture,” said Frank Cohen, CEO, PushToTest, speaking with SearchSOA.com, at the AADI Summit. Both the agile drive and the open source drive may soon impact middleware more widely, Cohen indicated. But a failure to come up with a common business interface pattern continues to challenge the user community.
"ESBs and application servers need to be refactored to become cloud aware and to be cloud-friendly," says Chris Haddad, VP of technology evangelism at WSO2. Haddad suggests adding provisioning on-ramps to app servers for spinning up servers and to facilitate subscribing to services. He also says new application servers should be multitenant aware, with multitenancy baked in rather than having to provision a unique instance for each new partner that comes into the system.
In vendor and product news, Talend announced at the Gartner AADI Summit that they will be adding BPM capabilities to their Unified Platform in version five. Talend recently added ESB capabilities to its data integration platform via the acquisition of Sopera in 2010. SearchSOA.com was able to talk with Talend's vice president of marketing about the new partnership with BonitaSoft that brings BPM into the mix.
The Gartner AADI Summit 2010 coverage
In 2010, Gartner's Application Architecture, Development & Integration Summit focused on SOA and cloud computing and overhauling legacy applications. Legacy application modernization was then and still remains an important aspect of keeping the enterprise architecture flexible and meeting today's rapidly evolving business needs.
Some of the most pressing challenges to meeting today's unique challenges are anything but new. According to one analyst in 2010, the challenge is really about effective communication. Gartner Analyst Nicholas Gall offered some advice for increasing communication between architects and developers. Similarly, the challenges of operational business intelligence and real-time analytics that came to the fore in 2010 trace back to the older challenges of automating systems and optimizing efficiency. According to Gartner's Roy Schulte, the biggest change in the early 2000's was in enterprise application development tools.
Another pressing issue at the 2010 Summit was the importance of REST over SOAP for Web-based applications and cloud computing. Anne Thomas Manes explained that, "REST is the architecture for the Web. [And the Web] is the most successful scalable application in history." According to Manes, REST is a set of constraints that limit what you can do, but at the same time enable incredible advances in performance.
Gartner AADI Summit coverage from the vaults
In years past we've gotten a lot of great advice from Gartner via the Application Architecture, Development and Integration Summit. At a time when many were wary of the benefits of a service-oriented architecture, the Gartner event often confirmed that SOA is more than a marketing acronym. SOA has been compared with older enterprise application integration (EAI) tools and strategies. But Gartner analysts confirmed that SOA delivers greater flexibility than EAI. In some cases, enterprise IT organizations have been able to renew their application portfolio with SOA.