Can Agile Really Work in Heavily Regulated IT Environments?
For the past several decades, Waterfall has been the leading software development methodology in heavily regulated IT environments. However, Waterfall’s popularity has declined in recent years as heavily regulated industries have increased acceptance of Agile software development practices. For example, the Federal government has released a number of recent publications and policy initiatives encouraging the use of Agile development practices and is establishing a new contract vehicle for Agile delivery services 1. The gradual emergence of Agile methodologies is encouraging for IT service providers looking for opportunities to leverage iterative development and delivery strategies to propel heavily regulated IT industries to the next level of efficiency. Waterfall vs. Agile There are a number of reasons that the government and other heavily regulated industries, such as health care, life sciences, energy and utilities, are shifting to Agile software development practices, but the major reason is likely the very low success…

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SOA Zombies Gather At ZapForum Boston: Night Of The Living SOA Dead Event
SOA Zombies Gather at ZapForum Boston: Night of the Living SOA Dead Event ZapThink Evening Networking Event in Boston, MA – July 23, 2009   BALTIMORE, MD June 15, 2009 — On July 23, 2009 dozens of experts, pundits, and influential guests will gather in Boston, MA for an evening of networking and discussion on the topics of Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) and Enterprise Architecture (EA). Open to public enrollment and attendance, the topic of discussion for the panel will be the recent news and discussion about the “Death of SOA.” Is SOA really dead? Is it dying? Or is it changing? And what about those that are currently doing something with SOA or even just interested in the topic? Are we the “living dead”?   As a way of encouraging dialogue, networking, and communication within the SOA and EA, ZapThink is hosts its evening ZapForum networking events throughout the…

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ZapThink Announces Release of Online, Computer-Based SOA Training
Baltimore, MD (PRunderground) May 21, 2009 — ZapThink today announces the availability of its online, computer-based Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) Licensed ZapThink Architect (LZA) training and credentialing course. In this first-of-its-kind offering, attendees can get access to over 20 hours of self-paced video instruction and slides, online testing and evaluation, and opportunity to submit architectural exercises to ZapThink master architects for grading and assessment. Upon completion of the online course, attendees will receive the same LZA Credential that they would receive if they attended one of ZapThinks popular in-person training events. “Companies and individuals are looking for vendor-neutral, practical, in-depth training that is affordable and has minimal impact on their resources,” said Ronald Schmelzer, Managing Partner with ZapThink, LLC. “ZapThinkís new online, CBT courseware fits the bill. Individuals can sign up and get the same in-depth, hands-on SOA training that they’ve come to expect from ZapThink, but at their own…

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ZapThink Announces SOA for Managers Certification Course at IMPACT 2009
BALTIMORE, MD (PRunderground) March 26, 2009 — ZapThink announces today the availability of its SOA for Managers course co-located at IBM’s IMPACT 2009 conference in Las Vegas, NV on May 3, 2009. In this one-day course, attendees will get detailed guidance and expertise in how to implement and manage SOA with the latest best practices and methods. The one day event will feature Jason Bloomberg and Ronald Schmelzer, Managing Partners with ZapThink as lecturers and contributors. “Companies want to know how apply SOA best practices to enhance and optimize their existing investments in IT,” said Ronald Schmelzer, Managing Partner with ZapThink. “This one-day, practical event will give enterprises of all sizes, architecture practitioners, consulting firms, and technology vendors the best practices and practical implementation knowledge they are seeking.” Key topics addressed during the one-day event on May 3, 2009 in Las Vegas, NV include: Fundamentals of SOA Defining SOA Success…

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Goodbye 2008… Here we Come, 2009!
It’s hard to believe that another year has come and gone, but with so much happening in 2008: global recession and economic stress, presidential elections, warfare and terrorism, natural disasters, and other happenings both good and bad, perhaps it’s good to shut the door quickly on this year and open up a new, more hopeful one. After all, it is at times of strife that sometimes the greatest successes emerge. And this is what we are hoping for in 2009: not just for the world at large, but for companies that adopt and implement the tenets of Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA). In this ZapFlash, as is our usual practice, we’ll take a look at some of the predictions we made for this year and see how they panned out, and make some new ones. We’ll scold ourselves for predictions that missed the mark, and of course, give ourselves kudos for the…

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2009 New Year’s Resolution: Rethink your Training Strategy
As we wrap up Thanksgiving Day (in the United States) and head into the greater part of the winter holiday season, our thoughts inevitably turn to an evaluation of the year gone by and goals for improvement in the year ahead. Some of us may even promise to exercise more, eat more healthfully, and take care of our personal lives better, and we may indeed keep those promises. But at ZapThink we would like you to commit to a New Year’s resolution we know you can keep: improve your Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) skills by rethinking your SOA training strategy. ZapThink is fond of saying that “SOA is something you do, not something you buy.” Yet many so-called architects short-cut the step of actually doing architecture by hoping to buy their way to SOA. By now, we don’t have to tell you that you won’t get SOA by…

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ZapThink Announces Major Update to Popular SOA Implementation Roadmap Poster
ZapThink, the industry’s foremost experts, advisers, and educators in the field of Service-Oriented Architecture, is responding to customer demand with today’s publication of the third version of its popular “ZapThink SOA Implementation Roadmap” poster. The company distributed over 100,000 copies of its first two versions of the poster, the first in 2003 and then updated in 2005. The latest version adds cutting-edge thought leadership in SOA, includes detail on architectural artifacts, and expands coverage of SOA Quality, Enterprise Mashups, and more.   Read more at: Emediawire…

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The Great SOA Consultant Squeeze
Here’s the scenario: you’re a CIO who, in spite of reading ZapThink’s warning about issuing a SOA RFP, you find yourself doing just that, shopping for a professional services firm who can help you with your initial planning phase of what promises to be a full-blown enterprise Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) implementation. Based on your requirements, your own architecture team has calculated that this initial planning project calls for 100 hours of a senior-level SOA architect’s time. So, you send out your Request for Proposal (RFP) to three consulting firms: a large, internationally known firm, a midsize firm with a well-regarded technical focus, and a boutique SOA firm that focuses solely on SOA engagements. To your surprise, the three responses come back with wildly different figures. The boutique firm proposes the highest price, the midsize firm comes in at 75% of the boutique firm, and the large firm, whom you…

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SOA Glossary
As a reference for our subscribers and advisory clients, ZapThink has assembled this glossary of terms related to Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA). ZapThink defines and uses these terms in its research, advisory practice, as well as in its Licensed ZapThink Architect (LZA) curriculum. This list is not meant to be fully comprehensive. Rather, these are terms represent key concepts that ZapThink has a particular take on. If a term does not appear on this list, ZapThink is happy to point clients to broadly available definition of the term. The terms included here fall into these categories: terminology related to Services, architecture, infrastructure, governance, and process.

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