Software Powerhouses Agree on SOA Standards Bodies
March 26, 2007 Timothy Prickett Morgan
In December 2005, seven software companies got together in an unnamed group to pitch the idea of creating some standards to govern the way applications written to a service oriented architecture should be implemented; last July, the group expanded its membership to 17 companies–many of the major software players, minus Microsoft and Sun Microsystems. And last week, the SOA group, now with Sun as a member, but still not Microsoft, decided to submit its proposed Service Component Architecture (SCA) and Service Data Objects (SDO) standards to the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards, or OASIS.
The SOA standards advocates behind this effort include BEA Systems, Cape Clear, IBM, Interface21, IONA, Oracle, Primeton Technologies, Progress Software, Red Hat, Rogue Wave Software, SAP, Siemens, Software AG, Sun Microsystems, Sybase, TIBCO Software, and Xcalia.
This may not be a very exiting announcement in terms of feeds and speeds, but submitting SCA and SDO to a neutral standards body is going to eventually make it possible for SOA standards to evolve in a non-contentious fashion–something that end user companies really want.
SCA and SDO are actually collections of language-neutral standards that describe how an SOA service is created, how multiple services are assembled into an application, and how data is moved among services as they provide a layer of abstraction to link into myriad APIs in operating systems, databases, middleware, and application software. OASIS is getting control of SCA, which as the name suggests, is focused on how services are architected into applications, while OASIS is only getting a hold of the SDO pieces that relate to programming languages other than Java. To make Sun happy, the SDO-Java work will be steered by the Java Community Process, the meritocracy created by Sun for its Java licensees to control the development of the Java programming language and related runtimes and tools.
To find out more about the SCA and SDO specifications, go to the Open Service Oriented Architecture site. SCA specifications have been created for Java, Spring, BPEL, and C++ languages, with additional standards for service assembly, policies, and binding. SDO specifications have been created for Java and C++, and there are draft specifications under review for C and COBOL. No one has said bupkus about RPG. Uh, IBM. Now might be a good time to get some specs together for RPG.