BT

InfoQ Homepage News The Rise and Fall of CORBA

The Rise and Fall of CORBA

Bookmarks

Michi Henning, who used to be one of the most well-known public figures in the CORBA scene, has written an article for ACM queue describing "the rise and fall of CORBA". Despite its focus on this particular technology, which many view as one of the alternatives for implementing service-oriented architectures, some of his arguments might be considered applicable for the standard and specifications in the Web services space:

By combining features, specifications end up as the kitchen sink of every feature thought of by anyone ever. This not only makes the specifications larger and more complex than necessary, but also tends to introduce inconsistencies: Different features that, in isolation, are perfectly reasonable can subtly interact with each other and cause semantic conflicts.

To be fair, the often criticized closed-door process most MS/IBM-driven WS specifications are created in addresses some of these problems. WSDL 2.0 and XML Schema (part 1, part 2) might be considered canonical examples of design by committee.

Doug Schmidt, another very respected name in the CORBA scene, weighs in with some thoughtful comments and related links in the comp.object.corba newsgroup; another interesting follow-up is by Steve Loughran, co-author of the influential "Rethinking the Java SOAP Stack" report. Whatever one may think about the reasons for CORBA's failure - or in fact, whether one believes CORBA has failed at all - it's certainly worth being aware of mistakes made in the past to avoid them in the future.

Rate this Article

Adoption
Style

Hello stranger!

You need to Register an InfoQ account or or login to post comments. But there's so much more behind being registered.

Get the most out of the InfoQ experience.

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Community comments

  • It could happen to us!

    by Floyd Marinescu /

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    It would seem as an observer that the kitchen sink effect is happening in the SOA space with all the WS-* specs.

  • Standards

    by Geoffrey Wiseman /

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    I have to admit, this is why I often like the 'defacto' standards over the 'designed' standards; they're developed to serve a particular need, they take a viewpoint, and they don't deliver designs that try and please everyone to the benefit of none.

  • Re: Standards

    by Geoffrey Wiseman /

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    Now that I've had time to read the article in full, I'd say there are some useful lessons for software developers (and product developers in particular), even those not responsible for the creation of standards.

  • More Comments

    by Stefan Tilkov /

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    Some more interesting comments have been made by Systinet's Radovan Janecek and IONA's Steve Vinoski.

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

BT

Is your profile up-to-date? Please take a moment to review and update.

Note: If updating/changing your email, a validation request will be sent

Company name:
Company role:
Company size:
Country/Zone:
State/Province/Region:
You will be sent an email to validate the new email address. This pop-up will close itself in a few moments.