SOA Blog Watch 4/30: SOA? WOA? Call the Whole Thing Off?

We couldn't really call this ongoing feature SOA Blog Watch without covering the current service-oriented architecture (SOA) vs. Web-oriented architecture (WOA) debate out there, so here goes:

  • ZDNet appeared to kick off the latest round thanks to these early April posts by Dion Hinchcliffe and Dana Gardner, followed up by a podcast and two posts from Joe McKendrick's Service Oriented blog. (There's also this Hinchcliffe post explaining both technologies.) So is WOA the "SOA that Works?" as McKendrick put it?
  • On, Miko Matsumura isn't so sure. In the post, "SOA Cures ESSD, WOA Treats the Symptoms," Matsumura writes: "With all the debate in the Blogosphere about’s important to answer two questions: Why are we doing SOA and How far does SOA go?....I have been looking at a lot of SOA projects worldwide, and I have come to the conclusion that there is a very specific disease of Enterprise IT that SOA cures. It cures chronic ESSD, or Enterprise Software Stupidity Disease."
  • Architect Mike Kavis worries WOA is not going to solve the problems people think it will. "The excitement that I hear about WOA reminds me of the day trading craze of the late 90's. Everybody was looking to get rich quick," he writes. "We need to make sure that we don't get too crazy with WOA and quickly build nice eye candy systems that we can't maintain, have no control over system performance and SLAs, and can't fix when they are down."
  • StrikeIron's CEO David Linthicum comments on InfoWorld that he thinks the backlash on WOA is undeserved."Relax," he writes in part. "WOA is a new term offering a new way to think about new things, in the context of old things. Don't get wrapped up in the [acronym], get wrapped up in the value it could bring."
  • And the entire discussion appears to be grating on the nerves of Jeff Schneider, who writes that the terms are just wrong: "Virtually all of the comparisons are really more of an analysis of 'Web Services vs. REST/POX/RSS/AJAX.' For those of us who 'do SOA' for a living, this drives us crazy. We fought for years to get people to quit thinking about SOA and Web Services as being the same thing. Now we have both analysts and press undoing the progress that we had made. Ugh."
  • Speaking of terms, Alexander Johannesen decides to throw Resource Oriented Architecture (ROA) into the mix: "I am a RESTafarian myself, and everything I do I do in a Resource Oriented way, so you can say I prefer the Resource Oriented Architecture (ROA) which really is a synonym to Web Oriented Architecture (WOA)," he writes. "The SOA way is far less technically defined, as SOA can be created with almost any technology, but there are some traditions and current marketplace geist with the term that associate it with larger stacks that use the SOAP and the various Web Services standards as a mean[s] to 'put it all together'."
  • And just in case any metal fans accidentally clicked on this story looking for information on the other WOA (and actually read this far down), here's a more appropriate link for ya ("Todesmetall über alles!").

But WOA isn't the only topic on people's minds -- here's some other recent SOA-related posts you might want to check out:

That's it for this edition! As always, feel free to drop me a note when you run across an interesting post you think should be included in a future edition.

About the Author

Becky Nagel is a contributor to Application Development Trends. She is the editor of ADT's sister sites, and, and is co-editor of You can contact her at [email protected].