Monday, December 22, 2008

New Gartner Magic Quadrants

Gartner has just published new magic quadrants for the SOA/integration application infrastructure. They divide them into three different markets - although some products by the big-name vendors fall into multiple categories:
  • New Systematic SOA Application Projects - this market represents the grand, all-encompassing SOA suites, which - in a way - contradict the "best-of-breed" appraoch that most SOA advocates propagate. These products are positioned as overarching, complete SOA stacks. Integration is less of a requirement in this category than modeling and design, service implementation (from scratch), UI and orchestration/BPM.Gartner sees IBM WPS and Portal, Oracle Fusion Middleware and Microsoft .net/Azure as leaders -- with the JBoss Enterprise SOA Platform a close call. SAP NetWeaver is considered too ABAP/SAP specific to serve as the basis for a corporate-wide SOA initiative.All the plus points that Oracle can gather (except for BPM) seem to come from the BEA acquisition.

  • SOA Composite Application Projects - this market covers tools that can deal with a Brownfield situation, where most business logic is preexistent and independently deployed. Gartner defines a composite application as "a software assembly that implements a set of independent but related functions — each meant to be perceived by users as indivisible — and where the component parts are heterogeneous in their information architecture." Integration can occur either at the user-facing logic ("integration at the glass": mashup, (personal) portal and screen scraping, Web scraping) or in the backend (invoking services or the business logic of the backend app directly using a variety of communication protocols, while guaranteeing reliability, scalability, manageability and security). "A composite-application-oriented platform that is narrower in functionality, but also more deeply integrated and less-expensive than general-purpose suites". IBM, Oracle, Tibco, SAP, Software AG (webMethods) and Microsoft are in the leader's quadrant, whereas Red Hat is still considered a niche player here.

  • Back-End Application Integration Projects - this market came about as the cross-fertilization between EAI, MOM and WS-platform/management products. Its most prominent product representative are ESB platforms. Gartner sees the following drivers in this market: "1) companies expanding their SOA initiatives, 2) the trend of creating services by using existing business logic and data assets and 3) an emerging recognition that there is a huge overlap in the features required to support the deployment of SOA-based applications and those required to support data consistency, multistep process and composite application integration styles". Minimum criteria for membership in this category are: integration services, SOA and BPM support, management, dev environment, B2B, CEP, BAM, data integration. MS, IBM, Oracle, Tibco, Sun and Software AG are in the leader's quadrant again; Progress, Red Hat and surprinsingly -- good old Fiorano -- are kicking around as visionaries.

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