Archive for September 2006
I’ve just arrived in Phoenix for the Gartner Open Source Summit and to get a chance to see how the other third lives – I’ve spoken to OSS developers at ApacheCon, OSS users and extenders at EclipseWorld and now I’m going to get a chance to talk to Directors of IT Planning, Directors on Information Services, Lead Technical Architects and suchlike.
This, I should add, is the same Gartner from which an SVP went on record last year saying that open source could have a damaging impact on software innovation.
We’ll see if the opinion has changed – from my own perspective, it would appear that the total opposite is true.
Also, this is my first time in Arizona. It’s 100°F (a change from 59°F in Dublin) and I’m delighted to see that the skies do indeed have lots of little fluffy clouds.
In a previous entry I mentioned SML and the fact that I got a chance to speak with one of the authors at EclipseWorld. During the conversation we were joined by Mark Weitzel and Joel Hawkins and we started talking about something called the COSMOS project – a joint effort between IBM, Cisco, HP, Compuware, IBM, Intel and others. This project was about unifying a lot of the capabilities of SOA Systems Management and agreeing on resource modeling approaches using the aforementioned SML.
Just today, I read an entry on Chris Aniszczyk’s blog stating that COSMOS had been proposed as an Eclipse project.
This looks like a good idea to me, and from the point of view of the SOA Tools Platform Project it could make it more straightforward for us to incorporate management of SOA resources.
By the way, Mark and Joel put together a really interesting talk and demo at EclipseWorld in which they managed to mashup SCA, Tuscany, OSGi, and TPTP. I was totally impressed!
Recently I received a couple of emails linking to the SML specification. I read it a couple of times, and came away with no idea what it was about 🙂
Luckily, I got a chance to talk to Harm Sluiman, one of the authors of the specification.
It turns out that the use of the word Service in the title of the spec is misleading. It’s nothing to do with services specifically. Instead, what it appears to offer is a described means to connect and associate XML documents, with a set of constraints that govern the connectibility. Since this piece of work is very fundamental, it looks to me like it presages something else coming down the pipe.
Looking at the list of companies involved, and knowing the effort it takes to construct a white binder agreement between IBM and MSFT, it looks like this is going to turn into a big deal.
Working in OSS projects means that much of the time the only chance you get to meet co-developers and other community members is when conferences like EclipseWorld happen. Usually, you get to meet brand-new people and have interesting conversations with them.
At the Wednesday night Tailgate Party at EclipseWorld I was introduced to Chris Aniszczyk and – I don’t know how we got into it – we had a little conversation about the PDE. My major gripe relating to the PDE is the headless facilities for automating build, test and coverage – after I compared it to something like chewing ground glass, Chris informed me with a grin that he worked on the PDE UI.
The PDE UI you will agree is in good shape. You just have to take a look at the new and noteworthy for 3.3 M1 to see that the team haven’t been sitting on their keisters since Callisto. It’s great to use, but from my perspective it’s only part of the equation of shipping software on the Eclipse platform.
Back to the PDE headless build.
The PDE build works – right now every Eclipse project uses it as far as I know. But it’s got a steep learning curve, and it’s brittle. I know this from experience 🙂
So let’s fast forward to now: in STP we got the PDE build to work well under the expert guidance of Naci Dai, who is the JST lead and buildmeister extraordinaire. Adrian carries on the torch and maintains the STP build for us.
I’ve probably timed this badly, but we would like some more people to help us with build mastery. Send email to the usual address – firstname.lastname@example.org 🙂
Update: looks like Felix is heading out of incubation!
Update: a sudden conversation on Bug 154251 – Maven2 Integration shows some relevant work in progress.
I got the chance to talk to a number of interested tech journalists and analysts during EclipseWorld and sure enough, the STP got some nice mentions in the tech press:
- Micheal Meehan’s piece at SearchWebServices
- Dana Gardner’s Blog
- Paul Krill at Infoworld
- Rich Seely’s EclipseWorld preview
It’s great to get this kind of coverage at this stage. Hopefully it will generate more interest for those developers who might want to use the SOA Tools Platform in the future.
By the way, if you are one of those developers, we would really like to hear from you: if you check out our Call for SOA Scenarios page you will see some of the feedback we have received on typical SOA development scenarios. You can edit this page once you create a wiki account and add those items that are important to your SOA development requirements.
A clarification – the SOA Tools Platform has not limited itself to Web Services only, but intends to include the tooling elements to support construction of other mechanisms of service creation – for example, a CORBA interface and its servant implementation.
If you look into the SCA Assembly specification, you’ll see that the assembly description has extension points for implementation/interface/bindings, so the space is there to be innovative about service creation. As we grow the STP, you’ll see approaches for deploying Services that aren’t related to WSDL or WS-* standards.
I’m in Logan Airport, on my way back to Dublin after a hectic few days in Cambridge at the EclipseWorld 2006 conference.
I went over there with a job to do: as the the PMC Lead for the SOA Tools Platform (STP) project, I had a talk to give, updating the attendees with the status of the project. I think it went over pretty well – our presentation (pdf link) was chock-full of details of the STP sub-projects and included a number of demos of the code contributions.
After the presentation we had some great questions and I’ll be frank and say for some of them I didn’t have really good answers – especially on how the SOA tools project is going to enable and support security aspects of many runtimes and services programming models. I got lucky though when a guy from the Australian Bureau of Statistics volunteered to help us out with putting together our vision around security.
Wayne, I thank you most sincerely and look forward to working with you. I’ve subscribed you to the stp-dev mailing list too 🙂