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New tools evolve from Web services, SOA

From Web services and Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) will emerge a new kind of application development using tools called "personal service builders," predicts Jonathan Sapir, president at InfoPower Systems Inc., Deerfield, Ill.

His company is currently Alpha-testing a personal service builder and deployment platform it designed to allow computer-savvy business users to take simple applications and publish them as Web services.

"We're seeing XML, Web services and SOAs as part of a coming together of trends that will allow organizations and individuals in organizations to build a lot of their own applications," Sapir told XML Report.

He sees personal services assembled into larger business applications as the next trend in corporate IT, but with most of the actual development being done outside IT by individual business users. This would result in productivity gains, as business users would be able to share applications and link them together to eliminate manual steps, Sapir explained.

For example, individuals in the accounting department would take spreadsheet formulas and database queries for reports and link them together to create a seamless business process. Where currently one accountant might have a formula for calculating commissions and a co-worker would supply sales totals from a database query, these individual processes could be linked in the SOA environment that Sapir envisions, eliminating bottlenecks such as the re-keying of data.

He sees personal services as a way to boost business productivity and to stimulate a lethargic economy. "We've got a need to create a different type of system," Sapir said. "We need to start addressing systems that have to be a lot more flexible and dynamic. We believe the only way to do that is to not throw these requirements over to IT and say 'This is what we need, go build it for us.' Rather, what we need to do is allow individuals to build their own personal services and then use the technology, like Web services in an SOA environment, to pull all these things together into meaningful processes."

More information on InfoPower is available at http://infpwr.com/index.html.

About the Author

Rich Seeley is Web Editor for Campus Technology.

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