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Enterprise SOA by Thomas Mattern, Dan Woods

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What do the analysts think, and what trouble do they foresee?

If we had to boil it down to one sentence, it would be this quote, drawn from a report by Gartner: "There is no alternative to [SOA] and web services as a basis for future software. The issues revolve around the rate of adoption and the purposes for which it is applied."[*] In other words, it's not a question of whether an SOA will supplant today's architecture, but rather, how long it will take to complete this evolution.

Technology analysts at Gartner Group—one of the most respected research firms in the field—are generally optimistic about SOA's potential, and have at times made a case for the transformative power of enterprise services that is very similar to what we present in this book. However, the same analysts have also pointed to any number of pitfalls lying in wait for companies just beginning the transformation. Here are a few of their more pressing concerns:

Many of these technologies and their development tools are adolescent, yet overhyped.

Companies that decide to begin tackling SOA while in the thrall of industry hype will indubitably become dissatisfied and disillusioned by the real pace of adoption and the many challenges ahead. According to Gartner, "Many projects are running with the intent to deliver SOA. The reality of the effort makes users face the lack of tools, standards and consistency in SOA initiatives. It is harder than expected for most. Many changes in user and vendor organizations and technologies ...

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