ESBCON 8 – Looking ahead to a great event

Later today the most recent ESBCON event will go live. This long running multi-vendor virtual conference takes some leaders from the major ESB vendors and has them give brief solo presentations, as well as putting them on the spot asking them 5 tough questions.

For IBM we have Jerry Cuomo, WebSphere CTO, presenting. Other vendors Sun Microsystems and Progress Software also have their CTOs presenting at the event.

After the event I will look to give my own thoughts on the 5 Tough Questions. However as a lead in lets look at some of the Tough Questions that could have been asked but didn’t make the cut to the Final Five.

Some of the initial thinking could have included questions such as:

  • What benefits do ESBs with SCA (Service Component Architecture) offer users? What skills does IT need to tap into SCA benefits?
  • How large can I scale an integration/SOA project with a single ESB?
  • Discuss technologies and patterns for scaling ESBs, in terms of traffic load, number of nodes or even multi-site integration?
  • Discuss trends in real-time visibility and management for IT and business users?
  • How does your ESB manage integrations end-to-end (include support for Remote Integration, High-Availability, Governance, Auditing or Identity Management)

Now some of these questions got adapted to end up contributing to the actual questions asked, but they do reflect important points, even with duplication and the different technical levels being probed. The questions on scaling are clearly important – after all who wants to deploy an ESB which if successful will undoubtedly require the ESB to handle increasing traffic loads and be physically and logically deployed and managed more widely across the enterprise.

Also important is the aspect of real-time visibility for both IT and business users. This is growing in importance, with all traffic moving through the ESB it becomes easier to understand how and where to track business data as business events take place, and also for the IT side of the business to track and control the use and performance of systems. This visibility aspect is one of the key unsung benefits that can be seen from a successful ESB deployment. I will make a point of saying ‘successful’ there as it is easy to think of an ESB deployment to meet a singular need that is then not used further to extract that data that can so enrich a business.

It will be interesting to see how the CTOs fare on the real questions, and I will look forward to reviewing that after the event

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