"‘SOA’ may have meant something once but it’s just vendor bullshit now."
Very interesting yet highly questionnable statement by Tim Bray. Without giving any
reasonable argumentation for this bold statement, he dismisses SOA as
something that does not matter anymore, and he says we should rather
focus on what he calls Web style. Of course, the highly fashionable term Enterprisey is used in his post, and increasingly people are using this term to dismiss SOA without giving any
argumentation for dismissing it, other than "SOA is Enterprisey". It is
kind of like what open source zealots throw at you when you talk about
MSFT: "oh, that's FUD!".
I do agree with Tim that simplicity is a
virtue when working with the web. After all, the Internet has been such
a big hit because of its simplicity. However, Tim misses the fact that
the services he talks about when discussing the Web Style thing, are a
completely different thing than the services we talk about when
discussing SOA. I wrote before
that there is something fundamentally difficult when talking about
"services". There are different kind of services, and probably the name
"web service" has not been the best choice. The Web Style kind of
services Tim speaks about are fundamentally different from services you
will usually use within an SOA. I wrote about this
before too: WS-* services and REST services are not competing, they are
complementary. Web Style serves another purpose than SOA.
Consumer-facing services have other QoS requirements than high-volume,
cross-platform A2A transaction services. One service needs to be simple
and flexible, while another service should seamlessly integrate with
different platforms. Different requirements ask for different services,
which in turn ask for different implementations. That is the reality of
today's IT world.
Once again: it is all a matter of perspective.