SOA out, WOA in?

As buzzwords go, people simply seem to like WOA a lot more than SOA

If the SOA buzzword had a PR agency they should be fired. Or, that's according to this recent post by Joe McKendrick, who I think is confirming the obvious when comparing SOA to WOA, or Web Oriented Architecture. Dion certainly deserves full credit for popularizing the concept of WOA, but Nick Gall was the guy who first spoke of WOA.

"People simply like WOA a lot more than SOA. At least that's the conclusion reached by Roger Smith in a recent article published in InformationWeek. (And also what I've been observing from other sources.)"

So, where did SOA go wrong? Well, typically the older a buzzword is the more people don't seem to like it. The buzzword just becomes, well un-cool at some point. However, SOA has more than $2 billion in marketing behind it, and most enterprise vendors have drank the SOA Kool-Aid long ago. So don't think they will be dumping SOA anytime soon.

SOA, at least in my mind, has never been limited to the enterprise, indeed it's an architecture that incorporates many resources, inside and outside of the firewall. You may remember Global SOA, now renamed WOA (I like WOA better, by the way). The idea is that once you've created the infrastructure to leverage services, it matters not where those services exist.

What's attractive about WOA is the fact that it's just sexier and easier to understand than SOA. Moreover, it incorporates many new other cool buzzwords such as cloud computing and mashups. I think what's most attractive is that it represents the movement of critical and core business processes from the datacenter to the cloud. This trend will continue, but it's going to be a slow migration over time, with some very visible short term successes, typically around outsourced infrastructure such as the new array of infrastructure services offered by Amazon.

Watch this space for more on WOA.