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In 2010, cloud computing met ESBs, data caches, services and more

Cloud computing took on the look of enterprise middleware architecture in 2011. Not too long ago, such a move was hard to imagine.

The great thing about technology is that it makes every day different. But the cavalcade of change sometimes obscures the underlying trends. As one year draws to an end and a new one begins, we are going to take a look back and see if we can discern some trends among the bits of data in the last year's SOA news stream.

The Year 2010 saw significant steps forward for open source Enterprise Service Buses (ESBs), a new steward (Oracle) for the Java platform that underlies so much of modern enterprise-class middleware, a surge of REpresentational State Transfer (REST) architectures within the context of both cloud and Web applications, and a big comeback in SOA, which some had left for dead. As 2011 beckons, SOA services seem central to emerging cloud computing scenarios, which themselves appear more diverse than many experts imagined just 12 months ago.

Cloud took on the look of middleware architecture in 2010. Cloud poster child expanded beyond its original Apex language support, buying Ruby-based cloud house Heroku and forging a development deal with VMWare's Spring application framework group. IBM added data caching to its DataPower SOA appliance, targeted at the cloud and likely to be positioned closely with its newly acquired CastIron and CloudBurst lines. These and other software appliances may augur a shift to more bundled hardware-software products on clouds, both public and private.

ESBs and message brokers, are also showing up on the wish lists of enterprise architects that look for cloud architectures to provide some of the functionality to which they have become accustomed. These same architects, looking to speed time-to-deployment, are trying out both BPM and BI in the cloud too. Not too long ago, such moves were hard to imagine. These and other trends betoken a powerhouse 2011 ahead.

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