The Distinction Of SOA and Other Softwares
SOA attempts to bridge the gap between differing systems so that the task of communicating with any single one of them is not much of a problem. Just imagine that you have the job of making sure that everyone in your team understands each other perfectly regardless of the language that they speak, that is a big problem in itself.
Unless you already live in a world that have these universal translators that Startrek crew has, it is nearly impossible to learn all of the languages that you need to understand. But there is a solution to this problem; in that it is easier to learn another language that all of them may be able to understand once they learn it properly. This is in way what SOA is proposing to do. By this method, software conversion can be avoided while maximizing the use of your current system.
While SOA by itself is neither a programming language nor a software application, it is a standard that is being worked out so that all hardware devices that run all of the software applications within them will have the capability to perfectly understand each other without so much as any hint of translating to and from each other being done.
The way that SOA tries to do this is by creating its own set of translation tables, or in the terms of SOA, a meta data. A MetaData enables any differing software to be able to communicate with each other by acting as the universal translator for these software and hardware.
The meta data can be software or hardware or both. For programmers, they know meta data as a system that is being used in databases of all types. We know that a typical database can contain an innumerable amount of data, and all of these data are to be fully compatible with each and every variable that may be needed by the software program.
The SOA attempts to interface differing systems by using special types of meta data that is placed between these systems. Currently, the only way for differing system to be able to communicate with each other is by the use of a compatible and programmable interface systems that is built into each and every software applications that are being used today.
The only problem with using this type of software integration is that these interface systems are only software in nature and their compatibility is dictated by the software itself. Currently there is no single standard to be able to interface all of the world’s computers into one cohesive, coherent and effective system, all of them use different SOA -like standards without the benefit of a true interconnected network.
The metadata approach that is being pushed allows for legacy migration to effectively stop, since there will be no need to change your software application to keep up with changes in programming technology, your system will still be able to properly communicate with all other systems regardless of what system you are using when SOA is used.