Friday, April 24, 2009

SOA Product Requests Beyond the Sun acquisition

With the Oracle-Sun acquisition, a lot of chatter about Java, mySQL, and Open Source projects and questions abound about product roadmap, among a lot of other things being asked. Since my focal area is SOA and middleware, I'm a bit curious on how the acquisition will impact the Oracle SOA Product roadmap. The latest Oracle SOA product roadmaps seemed to be a step in the right direction, so we certainly were pleased with the promised direction-- most of the OSB being based on AquaLogic. Now, there will be 2 additions to the "Oracle SOA Family" from Sun-- Java CAPS and Glassfish. CAPs contains much of the product from when Sun acquired SeeBeyond a few years back, and Glassfish has a cult-like open source following for their ESB and Application Server offerings. Both are heavy on the ESB capabilities, but I find it really hard to think Oracle will shift product direction again on the Oracle Service Bus, since they finally paired down on the product road map. Pure speculation, but I predict a sunset (no pun intended) of the Sun CAPS ESB, a survival of Glassfish App Server, and I'm mixed on whether Glassfish ESB will survive-- back me into a corner and I'd say probably not.

Some short-term Oracle SOA areas that I think would benefit from increased investments (my personal wish list?):

Registry/Repository: Oracle was OEM'ing HP Systinet but is moving towards AquaLogic Registry Repository. This may be more of a marketing issue, but whenever I talk to prospects and clients, I often times hear other vendors mentioned before Oracle SOA Governance (ALRR) and these vendors are lower on the Magic Quadrant! I think the governance tools are taking on equal importance as the ESB as a "must have SOA tool". I'd like to see Oracle begin pushing this as a flagship SOA product in addition to the OSB.

Improved BPEL and BAM tool. This tool needs to get out of JDeveloper land and really become a true Business Analyst tool. Right now, the learning curve is a bit too much for a typical BA or "non-techie". I do see the potential here with the current products, just needs to have a more business analyst feel for capturing functional requirements.

Mash-up and Composite Application Tooling: I would like to see Oracle combine APEX with a mash-up platform to create improved rapid applications. Maybe hook into Google Apps or Yahoo Pipes? APEX has been a little clunky on handling webServices, so looking for improvements (especially with REST and JSON). Would like capability to create SOBA's (Service Oriented Business Applications) in a combined APEX + BPEL tool.

Architecture tooling: Need a tool that competes with IBM System Architect/Rational tools to tie in diagrams, UML, architecture assets. These are a big part of the SOA landscape. Enterprise Architects, SOA Architects, Business Architects use these type of tools and standardize their architecture team on them. It helps provide the overall infrastructure for architecture team.

Sharepoint competitive tool: Would like to see Oracle release a Knowledge Management tool that allows for improved collaboration and asset sharing.

Cloud and SaaS Enablement: Sun has made some inroads into Cloud, but really haven't heard too much on how Oracle wants to move in that direction. Hopefully, the acquisition will open this up as a new Oracle market.


  1. Do not discuount the Sun ESB and OpenESB.
    Oracle Aqualigic vs OpenESB is not a competition - OpenESB has so much better architecture.

    Also, the thing to remmeber is that Obama new healthcare network will be built on to of OpenESB technology. Oracle will not be able to just (put it in the bag).

    Sun ESB,BPEL and IDE are so much stronger then Oracle.

  2. Java Arch-- I will not discount the value of the product, but I do predict Oracle will need to settle in on 1 ESB, if anything not to confuse customers! Now Oracle just made a HUGE investment in AquaLogic for the 11g Fusion release-- I simply can not seem them making another shift in their ESB product. The easier route would be an end of life of the OpenESB. Personally, I hope it survives, but I am predicting it will not. Now, Oracle does have a tendancy to support products for a loooong time, so wouldn't surprise me if they support it, but not build any new major releases or functionality on it as they try to get overone on the Fusion train.

    As to which product is stronger, I personally can't vouch. But, I do know which product has a stronger marketing presence, customer presence, and had the big $$$ investment. That may be the tell tale sign of which product survives this ESB battle!