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Can You Unpeel a Banana?

Can You Unpeel a Banana?

November 05, 2008 0 Comments

Maybe, but the banana won't ever be the same. If we extend this really poor analogy, we'll have a more flexible and scalable banana. (Sorry, I couldn't help myself.)

Glanced at twitter and saw @windley tweet "The trend to disaggregation gives users more choice, but necessitates other tools for threading the experience together.”

I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I liked the way he said it so much, I kept re-reading his tweet. There was something in my head that wanted to come out.

As a public representative of Progress Actional, I’m quite widely available online in various communities, blogs, and such. As my mind skitters over all sorts of news and information, I leave comments here and there, I tweet on various ideas, and blog on more comprehensive thoughts.

But being the scatterbrain that I am, I lose sometimes track. Was my comment approved? If not, I may turn it into a post of my own. I just signed up to the SOA Interest Group on LinkedIn, but did they approve my request? Has that forum been quiet, or did something happen to my subscription? How do I keep track of the services I’m using, my interactions with them, and turn that to a stream of consciousness to achieve my goals? How do I analyze the progress I’ve made, the themes that resonate, and capitalize on the effort?

Damn good questions, but SOA what?

Well, reread the last paragraph there, but think services in the context of composite application development and SOA, not sites and communities.

All you services and SOA experts out there, how do you keep track? How do you track users of services? Dependencies between services? How can you keep track of which services use which protocol, regardless of whether they are part of your SOA infrastructure, or just part of your integration backbone? How do you track from the earliest part of the lifecycle when the entire system is contained on a single laptop, through to production when it’s fully deployed and distributed? Worse yet, what if you’re using shared services in development, and your development project depends upon resources outside of your team and your control? It's worse because then you have a versioning problem even before you release a single line of code to production.

Now that we’ve disaggregated, we need to re-aggregate. That is, we need to unpeel the banana. But, we can make improvements (I have the theme song to The Six Million Dollar Man in my head). Re-aggregate automatically, only loosely, and do it using a layer of meta data around the business. One user may want a view by product, another by business process, and a third by customer type, or product class. Well, I hope you get my point that the whole idea is that it doesn't matter what your meta data layer is, only that it maps scalably and flexibly to address your current and future business needs.

That's where Actional comes in. Once services are used to disaggregate an integration project, Actional is the tool to thread the experience together at a meta, or logical, layer based upon the business. And, that's how technology can help a company use service-orientation to address business needs more rapidly than ever before.

david bressler

View all posts from david bressler on the Progress blog. Connect with us about all things application development and deployment, data integration and digital business.

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