IBM developerWorks seminar on ‘Leverage the power of smart SOA’ – Report

A full day seminar on ‘Leverage the power of smart SOA’ was conducted by IBM developerWorks forum today, 12th Mar 2009, at Image Auditorium, MRC Nagar, Chennai. I registered myself for this last week, got the confirmation over phone a day before.

The arrangements were good. Though, the preparations were not so planned as that of IBM conference held at Tidel park or the Websphere week celebrations held early this half year, I would say it was decent enough at this point of time. Yes, Organizing an event within a facility like WOW & Tidel park is relatively much easier than that of engaging a full-fledged conference.

ibmWe had been requested to be there at registration counter by 8-30AM, to get a suprise gift! I’ve seen many professionals across the companies came on time. That’s a good sign. I could see sweating Bharati Muthu, (Program Manager – Skill development for developerWorks, India/South Asia) was working behind the screen to make this event successful.IBM experts delivered useful and interactive sessions on SOA, web2.0, cloud computing etc.

The questions were enormous because all questions got goodies :). I would say some of the doubts were worthless!

The program started with a movie demonstrating IBM developerWorks followed by Bharati’s keynote. Let me brief about the rest of the sessions below.

1. Smart SOA – Ram Viswanathan, IBM

SOA is already on the full swing, a hot topic among the techies. This session was about optimizing it furthur, to suit the current economic trend, changing customers requirements etc. He insisted the need for bringing business and IT together to drive any company. He justified his view from various surveys and reports. SOA is to be implemented efficiently so that it can make the processes more agile, (change friendly), which will make the company to survive, He said.

2. Cloud computing – Ram Viswanathan, IBM


This is the recent buzz in the industry. I had attended a session conducted by Sun last week, which motivated me to give a serious look into this. I will write about this session slightly later.Ram presented the Cloud Computing at a macro level, followed by an interactive Q&A session. He explained about the need for Cloud, different clouds available now, the pros and cons of the same. I could remember some interesting questions were asked like, difference between grid computing and cloud computing, relationship between SOA, Cloud computing and SAAS etc.

3. SOA Next Steps: Entry points through reuse and connectivity. – Vignesh V, IBM

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Vignesh followed Ram to deliver a speech in detail on SOA and looking for possibilities in implementing the same. He issued tips to developers/managers to possibility of implementing SOA at customer place, rephrasing it, key points to convince the client to SOA, and how IBM has tools to support one’s decision. He listed out several entry points among which reuse and connectivity is given preference in his speech.

I should mention an interesting video about IBM ESB, he played. IBM knows how to market it! Here is the youtube video.

4.  SOA Technologies: Web 2.0 – Naren Krishnan, IBM

This session was interesting to me, because I’ve been working in this for a while. Naren was talking about the need for Web2.0, what are the technologies supporting web2.0 and the IBM tools that helps the developers to create applications based on the same.

5. SOA life cycle, Service Oriented Modeling and Architecture (SOMA) – Vignesh, IBM


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This was a detailed session about the life cycle of SOA. I thought it might have been better if it was delivered before the entry points to SOA. Vignesh pointed out the various phases in SOA like model, assemble, deploy and manage/monitor and explained the role of IBM tools in each and every phase. Finally he explained SOMA, which is a part of model in SOA lifecycle.

6. IBM developerWorks: Learn, Share, Connect – Himanshu Goyal, IBM

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This was purely marketing lecture to developerWorks portal. Himanshu being the head, he delivered his lecture in an interesting manner. But Bharati provided more information about the portal in a session I attended couple of months ago in Week of Websphere!

7. SOA Technologies: SOA and zSeries – Ramakrishnan Kannan, IBM

This is an interesting session on Main frames. Kannan explained the complex SOA concepts with simple real life examples and covered the topic in a decent manner. His talk was about modernization, how to integrate z OS with SOA. Good session followed by q&a. Being a pure java guy, I am not able to grasp everything he told.

8. Managing Business Process as Entry Point to SOA – some IBM vendor

This session was not so interesting to me, I got bored with repeated information and the way the speaker presented his views. Unfortunately I got a call from my office and I need to quit in halfway.

9. JAM – UnConference

This is an interesting part of the agenda, Just-A-Minute/Unconference. Participants were encouraged to present their own topics of interest within the given time of 10 mins. Laptops were arranged for JAM speakers to design their slideshow (I hate the word PPT, so MS-centric!). Proactive policies were declared to choose the speaker and topic. (democracy as Bharati told!!) I missed to see who won that ipod shuffle for his successful JAM session. I came to know that many participate actively and truly to bring “community knowledge haring” to full!

My view . .

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This is an interesting change, Corporates are creating developer communities. Of course, they try to form a forum, pushing the technology, which helps them to market their ideas and products. I just think about how Linux User Groups (LUGs) evolved over a period of time across the globe. Corporates follows the same strategy and they are coming to public domain.

Most of the giants are creating their own cloud, their own developer forums. IBM’s developerWorks, Sun’s Kenai are all trying to pull or encourage or help developers with their products. I will write more about this individual topics when I found time.

Let me end this report with a line what Himanshu pointed out.

I don’t know what I don’t know!

Thanks to IBM for the goodies delivered, the green planet revolution and the nice lunch!

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