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From The Founder and Senior Analyst of ZapThink

Ron Schmelzer

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Top Stories by Ron Schmelzer

These days, it seems that everyone is pitching the merits of using SOA to better integrate systems and businesses. "Drastically reduce integration costs, increase time-to-market, and improve business flexibility using SOA!" claim many Web Services (cum-SOA) integration vendors. How much of these promises are hype, and how much is reality? In order to understand what impact Web Services will have on integration, it is important to understand its true costs, which means comparing different integration approaches and finding out whether SOA, rather than simply Web Services, can offer a positive return on investment. With this knowledge businesses can decide whether their SOA implementations will truly save them money, or conversely, their Web Services integrations add to the chaotic proliferation of spaghetti code in the enterprise. The Four Phases of Integration The... (more)

Understanding the Value of Reference Architectures

There’s nothing more that architects love to do than argue about definitions. If you ever find yourself with idle time in a room of architects, try asking for a definition of “Service” or “architecture” and see what sort of creative melee you can start. That being said, definitions are indeed very important so that we can have a common language to communicate the intent and benefit of the very things we are trying to convince business to invest in. From that perspective, a number of concepts have emerged in the past decade or so that have become top of mind for self-styled ente... (more)

The Dissolution of the Rich Internet Application (RIA) Market

Traditional market research focuses on the size and growth of well-defined market segments. As vendors enter and compete in those markets, customers participate by purchasing products and services within those segments, and market research seeks to establish the patterns of such transactions in order to predict the future trends for such markets. In the Information Technology (IT) space, however, many markets are transitory in that as new technologies and behavior patterns emerge, what might formerly have been separate markets vying for customer dollars merge into a single market... (more)

SOA Is For Small Business Too

ZapThink frequently talks about how Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) provides significant benefits to enterprises by virtue of its ability to dramatically reduce the cost and complexity of integration and enable business agility. It is apparent that companies in many industries are realizing the promise of SOA by implementing a variety of SOA-related projects. However, much of the short-term promise of SOA applies to companies where the integration cost and complexity is high because their IT infrastructure is heterogeneous – that is, consisting of a wide range of disparate ... (more)

US Government & Federal Agencies Keen on Enterprise Architecture & SOA

Over the past two years, governments around the world have caught the enterprise architecture and SOA fever. This is especially the case in the US Federal Government, where a number of regulations, EA frameworks, and major spending initiatives are all pointing towards continued and lasting expenditure and investment in the area of EA. One can also notice this trend based on the number of EA and SOA events now focused on the US Federal Government, or at least taking place in the Washington, DC area. For example, ZapThink's Practical SOA event in DC on October 2, 2009 is focused on... (more)