A Ride on the Hybrid Bus
Travis Walker 27000093NF firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  websphere soa services amywohl esb datapower
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This blog post was contributed by Amy Wohl. Amy Wohl has been commenting on, writing about, and consulting to the information technology community for more than 35 years. She is an industry analyst and her current foci are cloud computing and the effects of technology on society. She also has expertise in helping to create new markets for new technologies. Read more blogs by Amy on Amy Wohl's Opinions and follow her on twitter @AmyWohl.
For quite some time, SOA development was done using the ESB (Enterprise Service Bus). Usually, the ESB was not implemented with the first SOA deployment, but somewhat later, as the development and deployment of multiple services made it clear that the ESB provided a better way of tracking and managing the services environment.
Today, IT departments are facing more complex environments including private and public clouds. A more robust infrastructure may be needed. IBM proposes the IBM Hybrid Bus, to fuse the first generation ESB technologies with a new breed of special-purpose appliances.
The IBM Hybrid Bus fuses together traditional WebSphere software ESB solutions with WebSphere connectivity and integration appliances, creating with these two components a single ESB solution that demands significantly less effort and resources to develop and maintain over time than software-only solutions.
The combination of firmware and hardware in an appliance has been under development for about ten years (before SOA took off); IBM’s acquisition of DataPower allowed it to extend development of the technology, with DataPower providing the basis for the acceleration. No one else is doing this kind of appliance for SOA at this time – the WebSphere acquisition of DataPower changed the game, with customers getting more consumability and increased speed to market.
Think of the ESB Hybrid Bus as akin to a hybrid car; its hybrid engines economize with electric batteries, drawing less-expensive power from the grid when possible, while at the same time extending the vehicle’s range with tried-and-true internal combustion capabilities. The software component of the ESB Hybrid Bus provides extensibility and advanced functionality, extending the “range” of the ESB and allowing it to adapt into more applications; create richer services out of services already deployed to the ESB; and provide sophisticated qualities of service for those transactions most important to an enterprise.
Many IBM medium-sized and large customers are well on their way to broaden implementation. The Hybrid ESB Bus lets them simplify and economize with the implementation they already have plus appliances they will permit development and deployment to take less effort and offer more sophisticated results.
A basic Hybrid ESB Bus optimizes ESB functions by off-loading transformation, and security enforcement. Other appliances will permit customers to extend to the cloud, exposing their services to the cloud and consuming services from the cloud. This strategy also works with Business Processes in real time services exchanges that have become quite popular. Hybrid ESB Bus users can come from any customer categories, but early users include government agencies, defense organizations, and healthcare providers and payers.