05 February 2007

Dion Hinchcliffe nails a growing sentiment among many over the last few year(s). There have been enormous unncessary resources spent on the WS-* vs. REST debate. And whether what flavor you side with, the movement REST pundits push, sometimes vehemently, is summarized by Hinchcliffe as..."leveraging the fundamental strengths of the Web to turn applications into platforms." [1]

I've heard some refer to this as using HTTP the way it was intended, if you don't its like running with scissors. [2] The current state of SOA is not intentional. Rather, it is engineering tendancy to "boil the ocean." Nobody wanted to bastardize HTTP, nor did anyone set out to produce complex specifications thousands of pages long.

When it comes down to it, WS-* and REST are Service Oriented Architecture. I, personally, argue that REST styles and principles exemplify the spirit of SOA more accurately. But that is subjective. Regardless, the time has come that architects look their work form different perspectives.

So let's look at what Hingcliffe proposes SOA architects to consider in the coming year.

  1. Make services consumable in the browser
  2. Consider syndication over "service-ing"
  3. Deeply embrace URI addressibility
  4. Use Ajax as the face of your SOA
  5. Monetizing your SOA
  6. Enable users as service consumers
  7. Virtualization, fast scaling, and on-demand architectures
  8. Offer an SOA as visual services via widgets
  9. Consider JSON as a service option
  10. Encourage and discover emergent solutions
  11. Leverage the Global SOA

Hinchcliffe's article mirrors my thoughts over late 2005 and through 2006. The article acutely summarizes key movements in SOA. In my role at IBM, I have the opportunity to work on a project that addresses nearly all of these issues and influence IBM's future strategy in context of "Web 2.0". Over the coming weeks, I will be exploring each of topics in separate posts.


[1] Eleven Emerging Ideas for SOA Architects in 2007

[2] http://bitworking.org/projects/rest/6.html