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Development of a SOA Manifesto

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Steve Ross-Talbot points out that there's some new work going on in defining a SOA Manifesto. Along with Steve the working group consists of people from IBM, Oracle, Red Hat and others. According to the SOA Manifesto pages, the manifesto will be ...

A formal declaration of the principles, intentions and ambitions of service-orientation and the service-oriented architectural model.

And as well as eventually being published on, there's also a meeting of the working group coming up very soon:

The "Towards an SOA Manifesto" Working Group is dedicated to producing the SOA Manifesto. The SOA Manifesto will be announced for the first time at 4:45 PM CEST on October 23, 2009 during the closing conference keynotes at the 2nd International SOA Symposium in Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

As Steve points out:

As a participant I started to look into what is out there and I must admit I am really surprised at how little there is for SOA. Of course we have patterns and principles and even governance [1, 2] for SOA but as yet no one has written a manifesto personal or otherwise to share with the industry as a whole.

He then goes on to discuss a couple of key areas where Steve thinks the working group needs to focus.

  • To ensure "that executive sponsors across industries understand what [SOA] means to them." This includes the impact of SOA on their revenue and costs (after all, successful SOA should be driven by business needs.) Furthermore the realities of SOA lifecycles (e.g., an iterative approach to getting what is actually needed, which may not be what was initially requested) should be "effectively articulated to business sponsors [to] help them make decisions."
  • As a community we need to arrive at a consensus that helps people understand what service-orientation really means, the principles behind it (business as well as architecture), and what constititutes a SOA (perhaps related to one of the SOA reference models?) Although this may seem obvious, as Steve goes on to point out "[...] in my world I often have to deal with people who equate WS-* to SOA and equate ESB to SOA. Which of course is not the case. They may help and even constrain and SOA but they not make one."

It will certainly be interesting to see what comes out of the working group efforts in the next few weeks. However, if you could provide input to it, what would that include?

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