Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Integration As A Service

Another interesting (sponsored) podcast was published on BriefingsDirect. Dana Garnder talks with Annrai O'Toole of CapeClear.

The ESB of CapeClear is used by the company Workday to offer integration capabilities around its hosted applications. Workday was created by the founder of PeopleSoft and provides "On Demand Enterprise Services".

During the podcast, the subject of "Integration As A Service" is put forward. Workday uses Capeclear to connect with its customers but also with business partners. The example of ADP is given for payroll processing.

The comparison is made with , which focuses only on integration with its customers and according to Annrai O’Toole, is facing an integration challenge. By the way, one thing I’ve always been asking myself about, is how it can address all its integration needs with web services only. Doesn’t have needs to communicate reliably and asynchronously using e.g. JMS, file transfer or AS2?

Integration-As-A-Service can also be implemented with a hosted integration solution within a large organization. In the podcast, JP Morgan is given as an example of such approach. The internally hosted integration solution provides integration services to the internal customers within the organization. Allowing these internal customers to address there integration needs in an effective manner, avoiding surprises by using a standard pricelist and a standardized way of implementing integration scenario’s.

Another interesting question that is raised is why companies such as Amazon, Google or Microsoft don't provide more subscription based integration services. Something I've been asking myself for a long time. And more in general, why aren't there more and larger organizations providing hosted B2B and integration solutions? In its introduction, Dana Gardner refers to GrandCentral

GrandCentral had a very nice hosted integration solution but went out of business. GrandCentral was the first to provide web services (SOAP) as one of its protocols to connect to its hub. Grand Central also allowed to design processing and transformations online in a Java applet. And to monitor all message flows and individual messages using an online monitoring tool. When I give training about application integration, I always show a couple of screen shots of the GrandCentral solution as THE example of a hosted integration solution.

Finally, I can strongly recommend all podcasts of Dana Gardner at BriefingsDirect. Keep up the good work Dana!

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