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This chapter is from the book

The Dream Team of Cloud Computing and SOA

While you can certainly leverage a cloud without practicing SOA, and you can leverage SOA without leveraging cloud computing, the real value of cloud computing is the ability to use services, data, and processes that can exist outside of the firewall in SEDC (somebody else's datacenter). Those who attempt to toss things to the clouds without some architectural forethought will find that cloud computing does not provide the value. Indeed, it could knock you back a few steps when considering the risks and cost of migration.

There will be some core patterns of success with cloud computing over the forthcoming years. Those who leverage cloud computing within the context of an architecture will succeed, while those who just toss things into the clouds as they think they need to will fail. Remember, SOA can provide a compelling business proposition when combined with cloud computing and an enterprise that needs this type of solution (see Figure 1.3).

Figure 1.3

Figure 1.3 SOA and cloud computing provide a great deal of value when they work together.

Indeed, one can consider cloud computing the extension of SOA out to cloud-delivered resources, such as storage-as-a-service, data-as-a-service, platform-as-a-service—you get the idea (see Figure 1.4). The trick is to determine which services, information, and processes are good candidates to reside in the clouds as well as which cloud services should be abstracted within the existing or emerging SOA. We take you through that process in Chapters 4 through 11.

Figure 1.4

Figure 1.4 SOA can leverage cloud computing resources as services and use them as if they were contained within the SOA.

Simply put, you can think of clouds as additional places to run things. The advantage is that you do not have to drag yet another software-rich server into the data center along with the people required to maintain it.

While enterprise IT is understandably skittish about cloud computing, many of the cloud computing resources out there will actually provide better service than on-premise utilities, once we allow cloud computing to settle in a bit more. Cloud computing benefits will continue to cushion the settling-in process, including cost savings, efficiencies, and access to thousands of dynamic Web-delivered resources.

Interest in cloud computing is also driving an interest in SOA. SOA not only is a mechanism to drive more reuse and agility but also offers the ability to figure out what should stay local and what should find a place in the clouds. Good SOA leads to a good cloud computing strategy, which leads to reduced costs, enhanced agility, and more excitement around enterprise computing than we have seen in awhile.

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