Microsoft: avoid 'big science' approach to SOA

Microsoft: avoid 'big science' approach to SOA

Summary: Microsoft has always been a leader in the Web services space, but has kind of played it low key when it came to service oriented architecture. No longer.

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Microsoft has always been a leader in the Web services space, but has kind of played it low key when it came to service oriented architecture. No longer. It looks like Big Red is finally starting to talk up SOA, as evidenced at last week's Microsoft SOA & Business Process Conference.

According to a new report in IT Jungle, Microsoft presented the philosophy behind its "real-world" approach to SOA. This involves an incremental approach, addressing one business problem at a time, rather than a more grandiose "top-down" approach that involves the entire enterprise. Microsoft said its view differed from that of other vendors, and that the top-down approach "is marked by a large investment in enterprise-wide technology that often fails to achieve results in a relevant timeframe."

The related PressPass interview with John deVadoss, director of Architecture Strategy at Microsoft,  is posted here.

In the Q&A, deVadoss says the most important thing about SOAs is that they are a means to an end -- not an end in and of themselves. "There is . . . a preponderance of what I call the top-down, big-bang mega approach, which is often guilty of trying to 'do SOA' as opposed to delivering business value," deVadoss says. "The fundamental problem with the big-bang mega approaches to SOA is that they almost always end up being out-of-sync with the needs of the business."

"Customers and partners realize that big-science projects don’t create value for the business," deVadoss said in the interview. "The 'build-it-and-they-will-come' approach to SOA has failed the business – customers and partners understand that you don’t learn by planning for months and often years, but rather that you learn by doing."

"We are proving that it is the incremental, iterative, real-world approach that helps you correct your course and deliver value to the business in a meaningful way."

Topic: Enterprise Software

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