Next transformation deconstructs conventional products into mix-and-match service components

BEA's evolution from Java to service-oriented architecture (SOA) provider reflects the larger trend of the middle tier becoming the next enterprise software battleground. With the emergence of SOA commoditizing software architecture, and Web services standards starting to level the playing field on how software applications expose functionality, the path is cleared for emergence of composite ap...

07/01/2007


BEA's evolution from Java to service-oriented architecture (SOA) provider reflects the larger trend of the middle tier becoming the next enterprise software battleground. With the emergence of SOA commoditizing software architecture, and Web services standards starting to level the playing field on how software applications expose functionality, the path is cleared for emergence of composite applications that blur the lines of power.

Like rivals IBM and Oracle , BEA has been building its middle-tier stack, adding portals, business process management, business activity dashboards, data integration services, and Enterprise Service Bus (ESB). The results show BEA as a company undergoing its second major transition. Just as the emergence of WebLogic circa 1999 eclipsed BEA's original Tuxedo transaction management offering as the world began to embrace J2EE, today the story is SOA and AquaLogic.

Like IBM, BEA approaches the applications world as an outsider. Unlike IBM, it doesn't offer extensive consulting, and is not even pretending to go near the application layer by adding content. And it doesn't sport products that border on applications, like master data management. The closest it gets is AquaLogic BPM, which slices and dices functionality from enterprise application silos, and happens to be its fastest-growing product.

Otherwise, BEA has typically emphasized technology infrastructure, and over the past year it announced a new architecture that could eventually deconstruct and unify its product lines, from SOA to Java and the legacy Tuxedo transaction monitor. BEA's microService Architecture (mSA) is a strategy to deconstruct conventional products into service components that could be mixed and matched.

At this point, BEA has yet to implement the mSA strategy, but it laid the groundwork with recently released integration between its AquaLogic Service Bus ESB and the WebLogic Integration EAI product. You could design a process orchestration within WebLogic Integration's tools, and then click on an ESB icon that switches you to the ESB offering, where you specify the actual service interactions. Although not a seamless integration, it provides a glimpse of how the mSA architecture could eventually transform the BEA product stack.

In another move to branch out from its Java roots, BEA is embracing what it calls “blended source,” which includes support of official Java EE standards and selected open-source alternatives, such as the Spring framework, which simplifies interaction with J2EE APIs; and the Open JPA framework, an open-source implementation of the EJB 3 Persistence specification. The significance of blended source is that it supports some of the open-source frameworks that emerged as simpler alternatives to J2EE.

“J2EE came about because some high-end vendors wanted to deal with customers who had high-end problems,” says BEA developer evangelist Bill Roth, adding, “Rod Johnson [inventor of Spring] understood what it took to put together an 80-percent solution.”

BEA also recently unified its two Java integrated development environments (IDE), converging its development tools under an Eclipse-compliant shell, and supporting the latest Java EE standards. n





No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners.
Control Engineering Leaders Under 40 identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
Learn more about methods used to ensure that the integration between the safety system and the process control...
Adding industrial toughness and reliability to Ethernet eGuide
Technological advances like multiple-in-multiple-out (MIMO) transmitting and receiving
Virtualization advice: 4 ways splitting servers can help manufacturing; Efficient motion controls; Fill the brain drain; Learn from the HART Plant of the Year
Two sides to process safety: Combining human and technical factors in your program; Preparing HMI graphics for migrations; Mechatronics and safety; Engineers' Choice Awards
Detecting security breaches: Forensic invenstigations depend on knowing your networks inside and out; Wireless workers; Opening robotic control; Product exclusive: Robust encoders
The Ask Control Engineering blog covers all aspects of automation, including motors, drives, sensors, motion control, machine control, and embedded systems.
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
News and comments from Control Engineering process industries editor, Peter Welander.
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
This is a blog from the trenches – written by engineers who are implementing and upgrading control systems every day across every industry.
Anthony Baker is a fictitious aggregation of experts from Callisto Integration, providing manufacturing consulting and systems integration.
Integrator Guide

Integrator Guide

Search the online Automation Integrator Guide
 

Create New Listing

Visit the System Integrators page to view past winners of Control Engineering's System Integrator of the Year Award and learn how to enter the competition. You will also find more information on system integrators and Control System Integrators Association.

Case Study Database

Case Study Database

Get more exposure for your case study by uploading it to the Control Engineering case study database, where end-users can identify relevant solutions and explore what the experts are doing to effectively implement a variety of technology and productivity related projects.

These case studies provide examples of how knowledgeable solution providers have used technology, processes and people to create effective and successful implementations in real-world situations. Case studies can be completed by filling out a simple online form where you can outline the project title, abstract, and full story in 1500 words or less; upload photos, videos and a logo.

Click here to visit the Case Study Database and upload your case study.