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April 01, 2003

Adam Bosworth on Service Architecture

Jon Udell reports on Adam Bosworth's keynote at CTO Forum this morning, a good overview of his vision for applications. Adam is one of the main drivers of web services as we know them today, and championed the adoption of XML when he was at Microsoft (along with Jean Paoli, now on the Office team working on InfoPath).

Web services are a native element in most of the software we're building at Macromedia today, and Adam's vision of asynchronous, message-driven, scripted, dynamic runtime-modifiable systems is a pretty technical way of describing the architecture for applications that we're working to enable in Central, with our focus primarily on the client side user experience and building on all the ongoing innovation in the services infrastructure. Still a lot of progress to be made in the underpinnings, such as wide adoption of XML Query, XML message brokering, and XML repositories rather than just relational databases, but there's certainly a lot we can build on already with our applications just with the web service architecture as it exists today.

A lot of this reminds me of what the web was like seven years ago, where there was tremendous change happening in browsers, a lot of new technology coming in and a lot of new techniques being developed for dealing with HTML. The same thing is now happening with Internet applications, we're seeing evolution in the underlying architecture, the patterns are being explored, and we're figuring out how to best deal with service-oriented architectures and occasionally connected applications.

Kevin demoingThe challenge this time around is that this stuff is a lot more abstract for developers, but I believe the end result as we get our heads around this could possibly be a lot more powerful than what we've seen so far with web pages in terms of the Internet experience for users.

Dan Bricklin captured a photo of me regaling Adam with a demo of Central at PC Forum -- it's a lot of fun demoing to Adam since he peppers you with hard questions about every 20 seconds. Adam, you need a weblog! :)

01 Apr 03 10:37 AM


Daniel Dura says:

Thanks for the links, very interesting reading. It really is interesting to see how much of this applies to some of the concepts behind Central.

He said "In Adam's vision of SOA (service-oriented architecture), a message broker sits in the middle of everything". Maybe I have read the white paper wrong, but in essence it seems that Central has the idea of this central 'traffic monitor' of sorts built into it, allowing messaging between applications within the central environment. To me this is one of the most powerful features, the ideas are already popping into my head.

Can you imagine the efficiency and power have having this on even a larger scale. A global 'listener' and 'broadcaster' of sorts....allowing different apps to share data efficiently across multiple platforms, geographic locations...etc. An app could still keep its data close, and broadcast the data in its own way. Then, any app that needed the information could be notified of new data that it is 'interested' in, or subscribed to. Very interesting....I would have loved to have been there!

Posted by: Daniel Dura on 01 Apr 03 02:12 PM

ericd says:

thanks for this great post. is that a mac laptop i see at the pc forum? way to go if true!!!

Posted by: ericd on 01 Apr 03 07:28 PM

Kevin Lynch says:

yes, indeed!

Posted by: Kevin Lynch on 03 Apr 03 05:08 PM

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