Product review: WSO2 Mashup Server takes first steps
Open source, Apache Axis2-based mashup server will please developers and developer communities, but skinny 1.0 feature set limits enterprise deployment optionsFollow @infoworld
Hosted Objects are objects hosted within the WSO2 Mashup Server that provide access to remote data sources. These objects are written in Java, and provide access to APP (Atom Publishing Protocol) resources, RSS feeds, e-mail, and instant messaging services (although only for sending messages), among others. One of the more useful if more complicated hosted objects is the "scraper" object, which makes use of Web-Harvest to screen scrape Web pages that do not provide Web services. From the enterprise standpoint, significant omissions are the lack of JMS and SQL hosted objects.
You manage all these services through the management console (supported only on Firefox 1.5 and 2, and IE 6 and 7), where services and mashups can be searched, assigned "usefulness" ratings by users and developers, downloaded, and shared. The service inspector lets you view and download service descriptions, WSDL, and other artifacts useful to both the humans and the machines who will use the mashup service.
The management console, while providing all the necessary tools for a social network of developers to interact to build and share mashups, lacks many of the features that an enterprise deployment would need. Version control, access control, service integrity, and other basic elements required for an enterprise deployment are missing in this version.
Another con is the inability to deploy in a Java application server. It would be nice to be able to drop a WAR file into your favorite J2EE server, and the requirement to run the mashup services within the custom WSO2 WSAS server might be a barrier to uptake in many organizations.
WSO2 Mashup Server enters a crowded market, with many more mature competitors. Aimed at bringing together networks of developers, this product could foster critical mass among some communities. see WSO2's community portal, Mooshup.com, for an example of the possibilities. For the enterprise, though, uses are currently limited by the lack of deployment options and services.