Three Roads to the SOA Implementation Framework
No company wants integration. The only reason anybody spends money on integration at all is because software as a rule doesn’t integrate by itself. But no executive thinks that spending money on integration addresses a strategic need of the business. Instead, money spent on integration goes for fixing something that really shouldn’t have been broken in the first place. The sad fact of the matter is that in the forty-plus year history of distributed computing, integration has constantly been a money-suck for every company with two or more computers that need to talk with each other. It’s been a long, dark tunnel, but now — finally! — we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The Light at the End of the Tunnel Fundamentally, software must integrate without significant human intervention. In other words, the distributed computing architecture itself must provide the necessary infrastructure…

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Pantero ZapNote: SOA + Information Architecture = Code Reuse (Finally!)
Before the Industrial Revolution, virtually every human work product was handmade and crafted by artisans — clothing, vehicles, buildings, anything people consumed. Then came the Revolution, ushering in mass production, which changed the fundamental economics of manufacturing and consumption forever. Software, on the other hand, is still essentially handmade to this day, where every piece is crafted by an IT “artisan” to fit a specific need. And so, software has so far failed to provide the same revolutionary economics to IT that the Industrial Revolution provided for manufactured goods. Now, while mass production of software may still be a ways off, the ability to reuse pieces of software is in our grasp, providing at least a glimmer of the profound economic benefits that mass-produced software could provide.[hide -1]Download File[/hide][hide +0]Register to Access this Document[/hide]…

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Resurrecting the VAN: The Web Services Network
Both software vendors and enterprise end-users have always looked to make business-to-business interactions automated, reliable, and secure. While many companies currently seek a set of products and specifications that improve B2B interactions, many large firms will tell you that they’ve been accomplishing the goals of reliable, secure, guaranteed interaction between companies for decades, in the form of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). However, it’s not EDI’s technology (which today is both arcane and obsolete), but rather its infrastructure that’s given it such longevity. We’re talking about the Value-Added Network (VAN) here — a set of capabilities offered by third-party network providers to guarantee the required level of interaction between any two participants on the network. A Third-Party “Network” for Web Services In the 1980s, companies found that their primary challenge in trying to automate their business connections was managing point-to-point electronic relationships with dozens or even hundreds of suppliers.

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Fundamentals of XML, Web Services & SOAs for Financial Services
There is no trend that is grabbing the market and customers’ attention more so than the movement to standards-based, Service-Oriented Architectures. Yet, few companies understand what exactly are the critical elements to realizing the benefits of this trend. What are SOAs and how do they relate to Web Services and XML, and how is this relevant for me, a member of the financial services industry? Key topics addressed: How are Web Services impacting Financial Services? How can we understand the landscape of emerging financial services standards? What are Service-Oriented Architectures and how are they radically changing the way we build, deploy, and manage IT functionality? What will happen to my job and my role as SOAs become widespread in the organization? [hide -1]Download File[/hide][hide +0]Register to Access this Document[/hide]…

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2004: A Leap Year for Service-Oriented Architectures
The standards are maturing, the products are on the market, and the architects have figured out what Service-Oriented Architectures (SOAs) are all about. Now that it’s 2004, it’s time for the rubber to hit the road. ZapThink has even seen several significant, albeit frequently tentative, implementations of SOAs that have already realized return for the companies that implemented them. Even more companies have architecture teams actively planning out their SOAs. Yet, while 2003 showed tentative steps in SOA adoption by end-users, 2004 will prove to be the break-out year for the technology. For end-users, this means a certain set of action items to make SOA a reality. For vendors, this means that 2004 will be a do-or-die year for their products. Beyond the pilot project and on to the incremental project One of the steps companies took in 2003 towards SOAs was to implement focused Web Services and/or…

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Retiring the Four-Platform Framework for Web Services
As an analyst firm, ZapThink sees many presentations from vendors and end users, and as a result we have seen a recurring vision for Web Services that has outlived its questionable usefulness at representing how the market is implementing and producing products for real-world Web Services and SOA solutions — namely Gartner’s Four-Platform Framework of Web Services. While the framework has helped many companies get started with their understanding of Web Services, we believe it’s time to move on. Fundamentally, the way in which the Four-Platform Framework is represented by vendors and end-users is inaccurate, incomplete, and in the final analysis, no longer helpful for either end-users or vendors as they struggle to grasp Web Services or Service-Oriented Architectures (SOAs). In its place, ZapThink offers the SOA Implementation Framework, which we feel more accurately reflects the challenges companies face as they seek to implement SOAs, and the products vendors must…

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Rethinking Software Pricing in a Service-Oriented World
Charging for software was simple in the early days of the PC. You bought your app on a floppy, and you had the right to install it on your PC. Pricing was one floppy/one user/one CPU. Then came client/server with its per-seat pricing. The software installed on one server and multiple clients, so charging by the number of users made the most sense. Next came the Internet, and with it the n-tier architectures required to scale software on cyberspace. Now, counting users was problematic, so per-CPU pricing became popular. And all the while, if pricing became too complex, there was always an enterprisewide license that would boil the whole mess down to a single–but not insignificant–dollar figure. Today, the rise of Service orientation heralds the need to rethink software pricing models yet again. Because Service orientation means thinking about software functionality as location-independent Services on the network–a layer of…

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ZapThinkTank 2003: Web Services and SOA Implementation Roadmap
Financial services and insurance firms today are struggling with the best way to implement IT infrastructures that enable business agility. Service-oriented architectures based on Web Services provide cost-effective approaches to achieving companies’ agility goals. This session provides companies of all sizes and industries an approach to implementing Service-oriented architectures in a way that provides return-on-investment (ROI) at each step along the path toward agile IT infrastructures. We will discuss the steps and phases by which these companies can move from today’s brittle infrastructures to loosely-coupled, coarse-grained, asynchronous SOAs. The session covers concepts in point-to-point Web Services implementations for integration, securing, managing, and adding process layers to these services, implementing registries and management for loose coupling, moving to asynchronous invocations for greater reliability, and concepts in virtualization, grid computing, and more. We’ll provide the big picture for SOA adoption as well as the details on how to actually go about…

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