As part one of our “SOA in Plain English ” series explained, SOA solutions are what allow businesses to quickly and seamlessly create electronic interfaces with other companies. When a new provider, distributor, payment system or class of customer comes along, the company with a solid SOA solution will be able to readily follow those opportunities, without having to stop and reinvent the wheel…
…The company that didn’t invest in SOA? Well let’s just say that they’ll have to stop to spend time and money on building something custom (not to mention that they’ll have to work very hard to avoid disrupting any number of other business-critical systems in the process.)
To view part one of this “SOA in Plain English” click here now.
Now, in part two, we’ll focus our attention on what is one of the most daunting aspects of SOA for non-technical outsiders – namely understanding the seemingly endless alphabet soup of SOA-related acronyms.
Q. It is a pretty safe bet that most of our non-technical users are not even going to be familiar with this next set of acronyms. Why are they important?
A. You’re right, these are terms that rarely make the journey from the server rack to the board room, but its good for execs to understand a little bit about them, even if only to know what they’re used for.BAM is a tool that allows you to draw real-time information form multiple sources and put it into a dashboard. For example, if you’re an exec for a retail business firm, you might have a dash board that shows daily breakdown between in-store cash and credit card sales alongside on-line sales. Right away you’re talking about information that is probably processed at least “touched” by several external parties and quite possibly by several different internal systems. Oracle BAM is the monitoring tool that holds your integrations together and allows you to report/notify issues and take corrective actions.
BPEL or Business Process Execution Language is used for more complex functions. Let’s say you need to complete an on-line transaction you’ve got to process a credit card payment, verify product availability, ascertain when and where X product will ship from, and you want to see if there are any other promotions you want to offer the customer to boost the size of the order. Well, that involves interfacingwith a credit card company, pulling data from your ERP and/or SCM systems, in addition to interacting with the CRM, and then updating the web page accordingly. Well, all of these processes orchestration will be written in BPEL.
EDI, or Electronic Data Interchange,is a method of transmitting data between two systems which was traditionally used by large companies due to the high cost and complexity, but provide you with the robustness and a standard way of transmitting data. This form of data transfer has been around for several decades although it evolved over time.
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