Solving Information Integration Challenges in a Service-Oriented Enterprise
As enterprises grow and evolve, they create and store their assets in a wide array of disparate systems and sources ranging from mainframes to relational databases, file systems to directories. However, in order for companies to realize the value of the information stored in these systems, they must integrate and connect the disparate silos of information in the enterprise. As such, today’s enterprises face an immediate challenge of connecting relevant systems in a manner that is flexible, cost effective, manageable, and reliable.
Web Services and Service-Oriented Architectures (SOAs) offer compelling solutions for solving integration challenges in a standards-based, loosely coupled, business-oriented manner. However, Web Services address merely the interfaces between systems, applications, and data sources, and offers little, on its own, to solve information integration challenges. As a result, many users that have integration projects require access to data sources that are disparate and heterogeneous. Companies thus require a framework by which they can solve their application and data integration problems not just in a one project, piece-meal fashion, but with a reusable set of components that can be leveraged in future integration projects.
The most advanced Enterprise Information Integration (EII) solutions, in combination with Service-Oriented Integration (SOI), addresses these challenges by providing consolidated access to information and simplified application development through the isolation of the complexities of accessing data from multiple sources. While SOI addresses the integration of application, systems, and processes, bi-directional metadata and model-based EII approaches provide the underlying information integration that allows for coherent access to disparate information.