I should have written a trip report on an interesting workshop (The 2005 International Symposium on Business Excellence through Services-oriented Transformation (BEST 2005)) I attended in August 2005. The professors from Management Information System (MIS) and Computer Science are working together to find ways to create, operate, and manage service-oriented business processes based on latest IT infrastructures and business strategies.
Based on my interactions with some professors at ICWS 2005, SCC 2005, BEST 2005, and other conferences, I felt that the collaboration of the industry and the academia can dramatically help realize the true value of SOA.
Quoted words from http://conferences.computer.org/apscc/2005/.
"Business processes have played an important role in enabling business application integration and collaboration across multiple organizations and multiple countries. To stay competitive, companies must be agile in adapting their business processes to the ever-changing market dynamics. The adaptive and process-driven enterprises should look beyond the traditional enterprises and marketplaces and transform themselves through collaborative interactions and dynamic e-business solutions. Proper understanding and implementation of the business evolution strategy as well as services transformation will help these enterprises run more effectively and efficiently."
Cloud Computing and SOA Innovations
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The original idea of SOA is an environment that allow service provider, service registry, and service requester to work together to get a job done based on agreeable communication protocols and understandable interfaces. SOA Innovation may come from both IT side and business side. From IT perspective, SOA can be used to modularize software components. That is why Web Services has been used by major software vendors to build a flexible and extensible middleware platform. From the business perspective, building innovative business processes based on reusable business services or applications we have is becoming a strategic direction for businesses transformation. Especially, the challenge for us is to create an asset-based solution creation stack and delivery platform so that they can be reused by any industry-specific SOA engagements.
If you are looking for an introduction of business perspectives of SOA, I would like to point you to listen to Sandy Carter's SOA Simplified (http://www-306.ibm.com/e-business/ondemand/us/operations/soa/soa_flat.shtml). The following three major ideas are mentioned. The building blocks of SOA are services which perform business tasks. SOA provides a language and platform to bridge the gap between business and IT. The other major feature of SOA is Reuse.
I will share with you some interesting research results and directions in this SOA Research domain.