J. Acc.

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Recent posts by J. Acc.

A lot of people are looking at SOA as an attempt to re-market Web services. From the research we've done, there is every indication that SOA is shaping into a legitimate architectural model that separates itself from past distributed architectures through a distinct design paradigm called service-orientation. Although the popularity of Web services technologies like WSDL and SOAP are, to a large part, responsible for putting SOA into the limelight, they are not the only means of applying service-orientation. It's best to view SOA and service-orientation as providing a distinct approach for building enterprise solutions and the Web services technology set as the most popular implementation option for service-oriented solutions.
16 years ago
It's an ambitious statement, but it is in line with some of the ultimate goals of SOA. For example, once an enterprise is comprised of an inventory of well-defined services, those with business expertise will (or should) be able to accommodate change to business processes by remodeling existing services through tools that provide a business analysis-friendly front-end while outputting "ready-to-implement" orchestration programming logic. Achieving this state, though, is dependent on improved technology, the adoption of many WS-* specs still in limbo, and a great deal of internal standardization on the organization's part.
16 years ago
Thank you for the opportunity to participate in the JavaRanch Web Services forum. I've enjoyed taking part in the discussions this past week. My apologies if it took too long for me to respond to some of the questions; this past week at the ranch coincided with a review of a lengthy paper on SOA I was asked to conduct for an upcoming IBM Systems Journal. However, after reading some of your ongoing discussion threads, it was evident to me that many of you (especially Lasse) already have a solid understanding of what SOA is, its growing significance in the IT community, and how the Web Services technology platform is evolving in support of SOA.

I have one last piece of advice that touches on a an issue an earlier JavaRanch contributor raised: the use (and misuse) of �SOA� as a marketing term. Almost every major application server and software development vendor is incorporating this term into the branding of their next product releases. While sometimes the term is used appropriately, sometimes it isn�t. Simply prefixing a product name with �SOA�, or promoting a product as being �SOA compliant� may have very little actual meaning. I would encourage you to approach this next generation of SOA products with a degree of skepticism. If you�re given the responsibility of evaluating or purchasing tools or servers, try to do some research to ensure that advertised SOA support doesn�t just mean it supports Web Services.

Best regards,
Thomas
17 years ago
XOP, the XML Binary Optimization Packaging standard, is an implementation of the Message Transmission Optimization Mechanism (MTOM), and the two are often referred to together (MTOM/XOP). With the release of these standards the W3C is proposing a replacement of the competing WS-Attachments and SwA specifications. Microsoft has already posted MTOM on its specifications page, while previous attachment standards (including SwA) have been demoted to "superseded" status.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnglobspec/html/wsmsgspecindex.asp
17 years ago
Even though XML Schema is used natively within Web Services standards, you can still work with alternative schema languages to structure and validate XML documents within your application's custom logic. You may run into some limitations, but other schema languages are being used, often even just to supplement XML Schema.
17 years ago
WS-Resource is designed to work with IBM's WS-Notification specification. Back when IBM released this standard, it parted ways with Microsoft who came out with a similar specification entitled WS-Eventing. It's hard to say where this is all going, but some analysts are saying that these are simply posturing moves, and that they will eventually merge their efforts into a single standard or framework.
17 years ago
It also does not cover Java-specific development tools or platforms. It's focus is on design, architecture, migration, and best practices related to XML and Web Services only. From what I've been told so far, the design strategies and architectures are of interest to architects, and the migration planning and best practices chapters are of targeted at managers and other IT decision-makers. We've received positive feedback from developers about the SOA modeling tutorial. Overall, though, this is not a typical programming guide. Even though it covers a number of specifications, it doesn't copy from or rehash these in any way.
17 years ago
Because of the emphasis on creating stateless Web Services state management has become a big issue in SOAs. Many rely on IMDBs, however, you can also utilize the WS-Coordination services to manage context information. The WS-Resource framework has also been recently released, and deals with state management head-on.

Here are some related links:
http://www-106.ibm.com/developerworks/webservices/library/ws-resource/ws-wsrfpaper.html

http://www-106.ibm.com/developerworks/webservices/library/ws-coor/
17 years ago
This document is pretty technical, but very useful for seeing SOA applied to real world scenarios. The Field Guide is a collection of design strategies and best practices with a broader focus (and intended for a broader audience). There is very little overlap between this blueprint and the Field Guide. Both are worth reading, and I'd recommend starting with something like the Field Guide before tackling this blueprint.
17 years ago
My apologies, localhost is the "staging environment" here on my workstation.
17 years ago
Yes, pretty much. XML Schema is used by many Web Services standards. Some rely on it to define standard document structures, while others use it for its data type support.
17 years ago
All indications are that Web Services and SOA as an application platform are an inevitable part of the next generation computing platform. Gartner recently predicted that by 2008 over 60% of enterprises will "use SOA as the guiding principle when creating mission-critical applications and processes."

Many organizations are taking a serious look at SOA because of the native interoperability it fosters, and the huge savings this can result in to meet future integration requirements. That, and the agility it promises to give organizations, so that IT can respond more efficiently to changes in business processes.

If you are considering adopting Web Services into your environment right now, ensure that you and your project team fully understand the technology behind this platform (both open standards and whatever Java tools you decide to use), and that you create and use design standards as much as possible.
17 years ago
Your questions regarding SOA, and your interest in understanding what exactly SOA really is, have inspired me to put together a definition of this term. So, I went ahead and wrote one up last night. Within this paper I break the definition into ten separate points, each emphasizing an important characteristic of Service-Oriented Architecture.

The paper is published at: http://localhost/ws-standards/soa.asp
Have a look, and please respond with your comments. I hope this helps clarify things a bit.
17 years ago
As long as both .NET and Java Web services conform to the same set of open standards (primarily WSDL and SOAP) and the same versions of these standards, there should be no real problems with enabling cross-platform communication. Using WS-I profiles is a useful way of guaranteeing this conformance of both end. The ability to cross proprietary platforms with a vendor-neutral communications framework is the main reason Web Services have become so significant.
17 years ago
WS-Security represents a framework consisting of a family of specifications. As a framework, it is still evolving, but some of the individual standards within the framework are, more or less, established. Several vendors have released products that deal with the uncertainty of this framework by providing server and client components that control the processing of authorization, authentication, and other security measures on both ends of a Web Service's message path. This, of course, is only useful if you've pre-arranged the distribution of this software with your messaging partner.
17 years ago