Will the real SOA please stand up?

Summary:A reader (no doubt frustrated by all the SOA hype) observes that Dictionary.com produces many definitions for the acronym "SOA.

A reader (no doubt frustrated by all the SOA hype) observes that Dictionary.com produces many definitions for the acronym "SOA." I personally prefer "State of Anarchy" (which didn't surface), but there's plenty more to chose from. "Shortness of Air" is also an interesting take. (By the way, Dictionary.com also missed "Start of Authority" record.)

For purposes of this blog, we define SOA, or Service-Oriented Architecture, as an intelligent network of reusable Web services-enabled applications invoked in support of business processes. An SOA could be two or more Web services, loosely coupled but acting in concert, providing a purchase order flow between a customer and a supplier. Eventually, we'll see multi-service SOAs encompassing processes that stretch across the enterprise.

For a good in-depth explanation of SOA, I recommend this more detailed overview from Clive Finkelstein.

Here are some other SOA meanings, most of which have nothing to do with this blog:

Safe Operating Area
Sarbanes-Oxley Act
School of the Americas (Fort Benning, GA, USA)
Scottish Optoelectronics Association
Scourge of Armageddon (Quake game)
Screams of Abel (band zine)
Secretary of Agriculture
Sega of America
Semiconductor Optical Amplifier
Separate Operating Agency
Service Order Activation
Service Order Administration
Service Oriented Application
Servicewide Office Automation
Sexually Oriented Advertising
Shadow of Amn (Baldurs Gate 2 game)
Shortness of Air
Sin Otro Apellido (Latin: No Other Surname)

Topics: Enterprise Software


Joe McKendrick is an author and independent analyst who tracks the impact of information technology on management and markets. Joe is co-author, along with 16 leading industry leaders and thinkers, of the SOA Manifesto, which outlines the values and guiding principles of service orientation. He speaks frequently on cloud, SOA, data, and... Full Bio

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