Industry consortia often set out with lofty goals, but don’t always reach them in the face of conflicts among major players. The newly formed Open Mashup Alliance (OMA) could be quite different.
The latest consortium on the technology scene, the OMA’s mission is to foster the successful use of web data services and enterprise mashup technologies and the adoption of an open language that promotes enterprise mashup interoperability and portability. This is a high priority for more and more enterprises, which is why the OMA could gain momentum.
In fact, it already has on one level. The founding members of OMA is a diverse list of software vendors, consultants, tech service provides and other industry leaders that share a common interest: promoting the open, free-to-use Enterprise Mashup Markup Language (EMML) for the development, interoperability and compatibility of enterprise mashup offerings.
Charter members include Adobe, Bank of America, Capgemini, Hinchcliffe & Co., HP, Intel, JackBe, Kapow Technologies, ProgrammableWeb, Synteractive, and Xignite. Any organization that wants to advance EMML and enterprise mashup interoperability and compatibility can join the OMA. [Disclosure: HP and Kapow are sponsors of BriefingsDirect podcasts.]
Remove vendor lock-in
Michael Ogrinz, principal architect at Bank of America and author of the book Mashup Patterns‚ was right when he said the industry needs to remove vendor lock-in concerns raised by proprietary toolsets in order for enterprise mashups to take hold.
“We also need to inspire the innovative minds of the open-source community to start working in this space,” Ogrinz says. “By establishing an open standard for mashups, the OMA and EMML addresses both of these issues.”
Andy Mulholland, Global CTO at Capgemini and co-author of the book Mashup Corporations has a different take. As he sees it, enterprises around the world are achieving excellent results with enterprise mashup solutions. But, he adds, these enterprises also realize they could reduce their risk and increase their value with solutions built on standardized vendor products. That’s a good observation and seems to be a driving force for the OMA.
But there is another driving force that resonates in a down economy: return on investment (ROI). Tim Hall, director of HP’s SOA Center, focused on the ROI aspects of enterprise mashup standards. He’s convinced enterprises can accelerate ROI, reduce the risks of mashup efforts and deliver real-time reporting of dynamic information to business users by adopting industry-wide open standards like EMML.
“HP's collaboration with Open Mashup Alliance members to promote the standard design of mashups will help customers advance their SOA initiatives by allowing them to provide a rich user experience on top of their web services,” Hall says.
The EMML specification will be governed under the Creative Commons License and supported by a free-to-use EMML reference runtime engine. The Open Mashup Alliance will steward and enhance the EMML v1.0 specification for future contribution to a standards body.