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Can BPM take over the application development paradigm?

Some time back I talked about ‘repurposing of technology’ in one of my blogs. Intent there was really to explore the trends of different types of adoption of technology products and question the hypothesis of alignment of the technology usage with the product vendor roadmaps.  That’s more of ‘risk mitigation’ approach since there is considerable threat of lack of support from vendors or lack of future path of the technology if it is not aligned to product utility as lined up by the vendor. Now, that is not a technology issue, it’s business issue and issue of product vendors making good and sustainable business.

If I read into the evolution of products and technology, I get clear sense that various software development platforms are swiftly moving to an integrated IT eco-system development platform. In the Conventional model today, we development separate components/modules/layers of the software in isolation and by virtue of architectural constructs we integrate them together. So in this process, software products have got capability to the level where they can create part of the eco-system with self-sufficient machinery included in the system stack (SAP, Oracle etc. are good example). However, integrating it again with overall IT eco-system and creating unified ecosystem is still a complex ball game. So here is the next wave of software development tooling coming. It is taking the scale to end-to-end enterprise IT solution development on a single platform where constructs like BPM, SOA, Mash-ups etc. are all part of the deal where users of the product will not be worrying too much about it. Now while conceptually such product is easy to think about, but it will take a lot to transform the current practices of software development. All users will have to worry about it the design, configuration and deployment of services. Platform will be lot more usage, monitoring and change management centric than coding, integrating etc.

In that sense, if we were to expand the existing BPM tools to include strong application development features as well as core SOA capabilities in the same product, then they can be self sufficient development platforms to create IT eco-system level solutions instead of creating piecemeal solution that need to be stitched together to make it work. BPM products have this potential as well as packages like SAP, Oracle have strong capability to re-platform current products to make it happen. I feel this is a strong direction to bet the money on. Not to miss that entire IT eco-system development tool might be available on the cloud for organizations to just use it to create the master architecture/configuration that they can simply drag and drop in their environment to deploy the massive enterprise scale solutions. What a possibility we are moving toward….we got to be ready for shocking way of life in the history of Information technology…I’m already feeling old…

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More Stories By Manas Sarkar

Manas heads the technology, BPM-EAI practice at Infosys. He is the chief architect in BPM, Service-oriented Architecture (SOA) and integration, focusing on customer adoption at an enterprise level. He has more than 13 years of IT experience. Manas manages practice and procedures to adopt continuous process improvement in BPM implementation. He enables BPM & SOA adoption through Infosys’ BPM & SOA Center Of Excellence (COE).

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