Recently I read an interesting Article about BPEL related analysis and design issues. BPEL stands for Business Process Execution Language and is the world standard to describe “Business Processes” in XML format. BPEL can be seen as a layer on top of the webservices standards like SOAP and UDDI. By means of BPEL one can describe a sequence of webservice calls, one can pass information from one web service to the next (like session variables) and one can describe how to react on exceptions during the execution of successive web services. This is a very short summary-like description of BPEL, which gives an idea of what is meant with the term “Business Process” within Business Process Execution Language.
Anyway, while reading about BPEL and more specific the analysis and design issues of BPEL, I came across various interesting Articles. One Article describes how a BPEL process can be described by means of an UML Activity Diagram. This article can be found here. Software is available to automatically convert such an UML Activity Diagram into executable BPEL code.
Reading further I came across several interesting Articles about Service Oriented Analysis and Design (SOAD). SOA is introduced by Mark Colan in the article, “Service-Oriented Architecture expands the vision of Web services, Part 1”, is an emerging architectural style for crafting next-generation enterprise applications. While the SOA approach strongly reinforces well-established, general software architecture principles such as information hiding, modularization, and separation of concerns, it also adds additional themes such as service choreography, service repositories, and the service bus middleware pattern.
A structured approach or analysis and design method is required to craft SOAs of quality. As none of the existing approaches met the authors requirements on recent SOA projects, they suggest combining elements from well-established practices such as OOAD, EA, and BPM, complementing them with innovative elements upon demand. The article can be found here.
Another interesting article about the general principles of SOA and more specific about SOAD can be found here.