2007 Predictions Results

Last year, like many other pundits, I decided to have a go at some predictions for 2007. Let’s revisit them.

  • Vendors: Surprise, surprise, the consolidation will continue. There aren’t too many niche SOA vendors left, and by the end of 2007 there will be fewer.
    Okay, so this was a no-brainer, but the devil is in the details. We had a very big deal in the SOA space between SoftwareAG and webMethods, and the deal that hasn’t happened between Oracle and BEA. There really wasn’t much that happened with the smaller SOA vendors (AmberPoint continues to chug along in their narrow niche), so maybe that category has already reached its threshold. There were far more dealings outside of the SOA space, clearly around business intelligence.
  • Operational Management: At least one of the major Enterprise Systems Management providers will actually come out with a decent marketing effort around SOA management along with a product to back it up…
    My wishful thinking didn’t pan out. I’m still astonished at the lack of activity around this from the big players in Enterprise Systems Management. While I understand that management software is an extremely difficult sell, you’d think that a connection could be made into the visibility provided by an SOA management system and the growing interest and importance in business intelligence. Overall, the marketing message is still louder from companies like AmberPoint, SOA Software, and Progress Actional than from the big players.
  • Registry/Repository: At least one players in the CMDB space will enter into the Registry/Repository space, most likely through acquisition. Thereís simply too much overlap for this not to occur.
    Once again, this didn’t pan out, however, in my conversations this past year I ran into far more people who now understand the relationship between CMDB and the SOA Registry/Repository, although I think some of the lower level marketing and sales people at the conferences need to educate themselves some more on this, because many of them didn’t get it. At best, they only understood a basic need to grab some list of services via UDDI from a registry.
  • CMDB: At least one of the super-platform vendors will see the overlap between CMDB and Registry/Repository and begin to incorporate it into their offerings, either through partnership, or through an acquisition …
    I won’t be as harsh on myself on this one. While none of the super-platform vendors have done what I’ve said, the majority of them have begun to show the importance of the metadata repository in their overall infrastructure ecosystem. Whether it is Oslo, IBM’s WSRR, BEA’s ALRR, SoftwareAG’s CentraSite, or any of the others, expect to see more on this one.
  • Events: … I think weíll see renewed interest in event description, as I see it as a critical tool for enabling agility. Services provide the functional aspect, but there needs to be a library of triggers for those functions. Those triggers are events. Along with this, the players in the Registry/Repository space will begin to market their ability to provide an event library just as they can provide a service library.
    I should have re-read my previous postings on the slow uptake of CEP and other event technologies, even though it stirred the pot with some CEP vendors. I haven’t seen much of anything on the event description front or any discussion of event libraries from the SOA Registry/Repository space.
  • Service Development and Hosting: … While itís too early to proclaim the application server dead in 2007, I think the pendulum will begin to swing away from flexibility (i.e. general purpose servers that host things written in Java or C#) and toward specialization. A specialized service container for orchestration can provide a development environment targeted for orchestration with an execution engine targeted for that purpose …
    Thanks to Microsoft and Oslo, I think I can claim a winner on this one. The pace of adoption may be slower than the wording in my prediction, but I do think it’s safe to say that more companies are trying to leverage model-driven BPM-based technologies for development than last year. The key question is whether they’re seeing the success they desire or not. A subject for another blog entry is the current reality of model-driven development with today’s BPM tools.

Overall, I think my predictions are about typical of my thinking. I freely admit that I’m a forward thinker, and as a result, I’m usually guilty of thinking things will happen faster than they actually do. I haven’t decided whether or not to make 2008 predictions yet, and given that the bulk of my 2007 predictions are still off in the future, I don’t want to do a rehash of the same thing. We’ll see. If I feel inspired after seeing others publish their own predictions, perhaps I’ll do it again. One prediction I didn’t make was how many blog posts I’d have, and I was surprised to see that my 2007 predictions was post 103, and this post will be number 345. While it’s not as easy to find time to post now that I’m back in the corporate world, hopefully you found some of those 200+ posts enlightening and you’ll do the same in 2008. I’ve seen a pretty significant uptick in the number of subscribers over the year from FeedBurner, so I’m thankful for all of you continuing to read and sharing the links with others.

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