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Enterprise SOA by Thomas Mattern, Dan Woods

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The Project Mendocino architecture

When the goals of Project Mendocino were first formulated, it became clear that two very different architectures needed to be brought together. On the one side was the client application, which requires local data storage. On the other side was the mySAP ERP environment. The different technologies in this case made it very easy to select web services as the interface technology, since both technologies added web services support in their last releases. However, simply connecting these two worlds using web services did not offer a comprehensive enough solution, in this case. The goals required more extensibility—SAP wanted to enable a model-driven environment on the client side. The model-driven environment is what allows Project Mendocino to push additional screens and updates to the user without the need to continuously run through an installation and reinstallation for every change in business needs.

On top of that, Microsoft Office currently works in online as well as offline modes—and that capability had to be maintained in Project Mendocino. The users had to be able to trigger activities while being offline and have them automatically resynchronize once their machines went back online.

Microsoft and SAP also realized that the system components involved—Exchange Servers, Microsoft Office, and mySAP ERP systems—are of such a high value to customers that massively updating those environments would not be acceptable. There is no reason to expose ...

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