In-Depth

BEA Unveils Products for 'Event-Driven SOA'

New server and performance-engine products support complex event processing in Java environments.

BEA Systems introduced some new products that the company claims combine elements of event-driven architecture and service-oriented architecture (SOA) in Java environments.

The products include BEA's WebLogic Event Server, a Java application server for handling large volumes of streaming data, as well as BEA's WebLogic Real Time 2.0 performance engine solution.

The two products, in conjunction with BEA's WebLogic Server Virtual Edition, can be used for "event-driven SOA and extreme transaction processing," according to an announcement issued by the company.

The solutions help speed up processes needed for some businesses, such as the financial services industries, where there is an acute need for real-time trading activity, explained Guy Churchward, BEA's vice president and general manager of WebLogic products.

"People are trying to turn data into knowledge. That's middleware," Churchward said. "People need to do that quicker and quicker."

To do that efficiently, Churchward added, you need predictability and low latency. You need to manage how many feeds you can process, something like 50,000 complex events processes per second, applying 10,000 rules, all while using Java.

"Basically, the dominant development platform in the front end is Java," Churchward said, adding that BEA launched WebLogic Real Time 2.0 to speed things up.

In addition, the WebLogic Event Server provides an easier development platform for programmers as "the learning curve is really low," he said.

WebLogic Real Time 2.0 has a guaranteed worst-case pause time of 10 milliseconds, according to the company's announcement. The previous version of the software had a worst-case pause time of 30 milliseconds, representing an improvement in system latency. WebLogic Real Time 2.0 also has a latency analyzer tool that allows developers to perform "real-time analysis of critical applications," according to BEA's announcement.

SOA and event-driven architecture are typically considered separate methods. SOA is equated with establishing services using loosely coupled applications and data components. Event-driven architecture follows a more asynchronous publish-and-subscribe mode. Sometimes the two methods are seen as complementary, according to one expert.

BEA Systems uses the phrase "event-driven SOA" to describe its new products, which Churchward considers unique.

"We expect interest and adoption of event-driven SOA to explode over the coming months and believe that BEA, as the only platform vendor to offer high-performance, complex event processing capabilities for Java, is in a unique position to take full advantage of this market opportunity," he stated.

WebLogic Event Server is currently available as a beta release and the product is expected to be available this summer. The WebLogic Real Time 2.0 product is also expected this summer.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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