Looking for a better understand of the vaunted Enterprise Service Bus. Well, then, here's a good resource via Dan Farber. It is a free white paper by Brenda Michelson, of the Patricia Seybold Group, entitled, "Enterprise Service Bus Evaluation Framework: Criteria for Selecting an Enterprise Service Bus as an Integration Backbone."
It provides a useful overview of the concept and its key tenents. As Dan explains, "It will clear up most of the confusion about ESBs, backbones, event-driven, SOA and other assorted concepts related to integration that IT executives often hear about, but sometimes don't get the whole picture."
Talkback contributor Roger Ramjet has an interesting take on the report, too. "ESB is either the 'real' kind or the 'Monty Python' kind," he writes. "Systems integration is the last true 'black art' there is, and SI specialists make top dollar (I know!). There are plenty of ways to integrate software today - the real difficulty is enticing or forcing everyone to pick one. Just as it seems that 'mature' software is becomming easier to integrate, some new startup, with cheaper prices comes along and upper management dumps it in your lap - setting your SI efforts back."