Service oriented architecture, commonly known as SOA, is a term that’s been increasingly used in recent times in the world of information technology – but what is it exactly?
To gain a better understanding of SOA architecture, a definition of “service” is required. A service is like a building block that allows users to organize information in familiar way, similar to objects and components. These building blocks combine user information and behavior, hides internal workings from outside intrusion and presents a relatively simple interface.
To put it another way, a service is a vehicle that satisfies a customer’s want or need through a negotiated contract.
SOA applications allow for different services to communicate
SOA systems, or servers, link different programs together – this allows for the exchange of information and automation of business processes.
Take Amazon.com for example – in order for a customer at Amazon to have a seamless transaction, several steps and programs have to work together. – each step of the buying process involves different programs developed at different times using different technologies and platforms.
There’s most likely one program that tracks inventory that has to be tied in so the customer can see if their desired product is in stock. Another program for a shopping cart and another for payment…all of these systems need to be tied together, which is what SOA services do.
As put by software industry veteran David Sprott, “SOA is not just an architecture of services seen from a technology perspective, but the policies, practices, and frameworks by which we ensure the right services are provided and consumed.”
Bookmark and check back Carnal Software again soon for a more in-depth look at SOA solutions and how they help companies share information and operate more effectively.