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Web 2.0 and SOA

Where do Web 2.0 and SOA intersect? In fact, just what is Web 2.0 in the first place? And where do SaaS and RIA fit in?

If you want to have fun, there's nothing like getting two buzzwords together. For instance, you may have heard the terms "Web 2.0" and "service-oriented architecture" thrown around indiscriminately over the past few years.

Often they run around with other terms like "rich Internet applications" (RIA) and software as a service (SaaS). It's not uncommon that someone in a marketing department decides people will be more apt to buy something with multiple buzzwords attached to it and so you get Island of Dr. Moreau beasts like "Web 2.0 software that helps you use RIA and SaaS inside your SOA."

First off, it should be stressed that SOA is a real thing. You can do it. SOA has a set of core principles and the tech community had gone to lengths to define what it is. OASIS has put together an SOA reference model.

SaaS and RIA are real things as well. Yet what is Web 2.0? Well, the W3C is working to build the Semantic Web. If or when that comes to fruition, that will be the real Web 2.0. What gets branded as Web 2.0 these days is something different. It's pure buzzword, a placeholder term for businesses harnessing the full power of the open multimedia network that is the Internet. It's a movement beyond the static Web pages that marked the first decade of the corporate use of the Internet.

Essentially Web 2.0, as the term is being thrown around at this time, is a call to more fully utilize the Internet. We at have had expert tips in the past on how SOA, RIA and open source software can be a powerful mix. Getting more out of the Internet is a good idea and it looks like Web 2.0 is going to be the shorthand way of saying it for the time being.

What IT shops are working through is how all these Web 2.0 concepts can come together to positively impact their businesses. This week we'll be looking into the intersection of SOA and SaaS, the architectural realities of Web 2.0 and how the multi-core processors needed to support Web 2.0 functionality can impact SOA.

The Internet has only begun to reshape the business world. The surface has barely been scratched. In many ways SOA is a way of setting yourself up to be agile enough to absorb the changes that will be coming hot and heavy over the next decade.

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