Click here to close now.

Welcome!

XML Authors: Elizabeth White, Dana Gardner, AppDynamics Blog, Jason Bloomberg, Pat Romanski

Related Topics: Microservices Journal, Java, XML, .NET, Containers, Cloud Expo

Microservices Journal: Interview

API Platform Transforms Business Potential with API Management

Interview with Alistair Farquharson, CTO of SOA Software

What led to the creation of SOA Software'sEnterprise API Platform?

Alistair Farquharson, CTO of SOA Software: As industry-leader in SOA Governance we spend a lot of time tracking industry trends, and also in front of senior IT executive at F500 type companies. We saw an emerging trend around internet companies calling externally facing RESTful services APIs as early as 2008, and anticipated enterprise interest in these APIs. We recognized that the companies that were failing in their early markets and so were pivoting towards API Management were on the wrong track for enterprise APIs, and so began a product management and engineering initiative to deliver a solution that would meet the needs of large enterprises.

What needs does the platform address?

Farquharson: It helps customers use APIs to transform and drive their business. It spans the entire lifecycle of an API program, helping customers:

  • Make sure they build the right APIs for their business
  • Build those APIs the right way so that customers (developers) can use them properly
  • Make sure their APIs are behaving right (are secure, reliable, meeting SLA goals)
  • Promote and support their APIs through the developer community, including within their own branded community or the public open community

What makes your offering unique?

Farquharson: The product is unique in a few ways:

Support for the full API lifecycle from planning and development through operations and community

  • Enterprise-class - we have been delivering software and services solutions to large enterprise IT for years and understand the requirements, including security, integration with existing infrastructure, performance and reliability, and much more
  • Social Developer Community - other solutions offer API or Developer portals, but they don't provide the social aspects to drive network effect for API and App promotion across all developers in a community
  • Federation between enterprise and Open communities allowing enterprise customers to promote their APIs through the Open community
  • Multiple deployment options - the platform is available as on-premise software, Open (free) PaaS, Enterprise PaaS and a hybrid of these.

The SOA Software Enterprise API Platform is the first solution to address enterprise requirements across the entire API lifecycle, with planning, development, runtime and community management capabilities. With this solution enterprises can finally take advantage of the opportunities APIs present without compromising their security or brand integrity.

Other solutions only address a small sub-section of the overall requirements; focusing solely on API monitoring, or API security with no developer community capabilities; or offering only cloud or on-premise deployment options but not both. None of the other vendors in the market offer an adequate solution for managing the lifecycle of APIs, this is critical for any serious API initiative, especially for large enterprises with brands to protect. Furthermore, other solutions typically ignore existing investments in SOA platforms and SOA Governance despite the fact that most enterprise APIs will be built on top of existing SOA services. The Enterprise API Platform provides a comprehensive solution addressing all of these requirements and offering optional seamless integration with existing SOA Governance infrastructure and services to ensure end-to-end security, monitoring, management and impact analysis.

How broad is its platform support?

Farquharson: This is pretty much irrelevant in the API world, but we are entirely platform-independent supporting any standards-based (REST, SOAP, XML, JSON, etc) API regardless of the platform(s) exposing and consuming it

Does it integrate with existing enterprise infrastructures?

Farquharson: The EAP offers extensive integration with existing enterprise infrastructure. It works with:

  • Most common enterprise identity and access management systems - extending them to add support for standards like OpenID and OAuth
  • Enterprise database systems including Oracle, SQL Server, and DB2 as well as open database platforms
  • Enterprise monitoring and reporting systems

Does it tie in with other SOA Software offerings?

Farquharson: Yes, it integrates seamlessly with your existing SOA Governance infrastructure ensuring end-to-end security; monitoring and lifecycle integration (makes sure that dependent services are ready when needed to support APIs, provides capacity planning and impact analysis)

What are users' deployment options?

Farquharson: The platform is available as on-premise software, Open (free) PaaS, Enterprise PaaS and a hybrid of these

What is your pricing model, and how does it compare with competitive offerings?

Farquharson: On-premise software is priced per CPU for the runtime (API Proxy) components and per user (developer) for the Community. Open PaaS is free, allowing up to 10 million API transactions per month. Enterprise PaaS is priced on consumed bandwidth, starting at $6k per month for 100Gb. Competitive offerings are typically more expensive for their PaaS offerings, and most don't offer on-premise or hybrid options.

What are your support options?

Farquharson: Support is available online through the Open platform's build in discussion boards, and for enterprise customers it is available via email, phone or direct access to our online helpdesk.

Do you offer branding?

Farquharson: Yes, we (or the customer) can brand the on-premise or Enterprise PaaS solutions to provide the customer with their own developer community stamped with their own brand look and feel.

What are the main differentiators between the SOA Software Open platform you just announced and the SOA Software Enterprise API Platform?

Farquharson: Open is limited to 10 million API transactions per month, is not brandable, doesn't offer enterprise security system integration, and doesn't offer any form of guaranteed SLA.

What are the key benefits for API providers?

Farquharson: Full API lifecycle (the right API built the right way), API Security (OpenId, OAuth, Encryption, Signature), API Promotion and Support, App Provisioning, Developer Management

Is building a developer community key to API success?

Farquharson: Of course, without a developer community, who is going to use your API? Even in the case of small partner centric (B2B) API communities there is still scope to leverage the community for creative commons and self-support.

How does the Enterprise API Platform help in building such a community?

Farquharson: It provides a social platform with features like integrated discussions, ticketing systems, alerts, documentation, and innovate resource following concepts allowing users to track activity for resources they are interested in.

What is the impact of the SOA Software Enterprise APIPlatform on development time?

Farquharson: By offering comprehensive API development governance integrated with enterprise SOA Governance processes, the EAP helps ensure the alignment of SOA services with APIs (makes sure that dependent services are ready when needed to support APIs, provides capacity planning and impact analysis). It applies enterprise guidelines, rules and policies to the API development process to make sure that you are building the right APIs the right way.

Can it provide both security and openness?

Farquharson: Yes, that is the delicate balance in enterprise APIs and one which the EAP is designed from the ground up to deliver. By integrating with enterprise security systems, providing built-in PKI and supporting modern security standards it enables controlled, open access to APIs without compromising enterprise security.

Who are you looking to adopt the platform?

Farquharson: From an API provider perspective it's all about large enterprise with the on-premise solution, large and SME for the Enterprise PaaS, and the public developer community for SOA Software Open.

Are you targeting particular developers, such as the mobile app community?

Farquharson: Not particularly. We are targeting all App developers regardless of their chosen target platform. APIs support Apps on mobile devices, Webapps, and desktop apps, there is no particular preference.

Is SOA Software's Enterprise API a game changer?

Farquharson: Yes, it allows enterprises to confidently take advantage of the opportunities provided by the API world to unleash their business.

Thank you for your time! Oh, one more thing: how do I get the Enterprise API Platform?

Farquharson: My pleasure. The SOA Software Enterprise API Platform is available now. Pricing is based on throughput. Please contact us for details.

About SOA Software
SOA Software is a leading provider of Enterprise API Management and SOA governance products that enable customers to plan, build, run and share enterprise services and APIs. The world's largest companies including Bank of America, Pfizer, and Verizon use SOA Software products to harness the power of their technology and transform their businesses. Gartner placed SOA Software in the Leaders Quadrant for the 2011 "Magic Quadrant for SOA Governance Technologies." The company is also recognized as a "Leader" by the Forrester ResearchWaves for Integrated , SOA Management, and SOA Life Cycle Management.  For more information, please visit http://www.soa.com or follow the SOA on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/SOASoftware.

More Stories By Xenia von Wedel

Xenia von Wedel, Tech blogger and SVP of Transform PR/San Francisco- Mountain View. She mainly writes about B2B solutions, social media and open source software. Transform Public Relations is a full-service PR agency, serving clients in a variety of industries worldwide. The agency is focused on thought leadership content creation and syndication, media outreach and strategy. Buy her a coffee if you like her article: http://xeniar.tip.me

@ThingsExpo Stories
The true value of the Internet of Things (IoT) lies not just in the data, but through the services that protect the data, perform the analysis and present findings in a usable way. With many IoT elements rooted in traditional IT components, Big Data and IoT isn’t just a play for enterprise. In fact, the IoT presents SMBs with the prospect of launching entirely new activities and exploring innovative areas. CompTIA research identifies several areas where IoT is expected to have the greatest impact.
The 4th International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 17th International Cloud Expo - to be held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - announces that its Call for Papers is open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
The Industrial Internet revolution is now underway, enabled by connected machines and billions of devices that communicate and collaborate. The massive amounts of Big Data requiring real-time analysis is flooding legacy IT systems and giving way to cloud environments that can handle the unpredictable workloads. Yet many barriers remain until we can fully realize the opportunities and benefits from the convergence of machines and devices with Big Data and the cloud, including interoperability, data security and privacy.
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, discussed single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example t...
The Internet of Things is not only adding billions of sensors and billions of terabytes to the Internet. It is also forcing a fundamental change in the way we envision Information Technology. For the first time, more data is being created by devices at the edge of the Internet rather than from centralized systems. What does this mean for today's IT professional? In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists will addresses this very serious issue of profound change in the industry.
Scott Jenson leads a project called The Physical Web within the Chrome team at Google. Project members are working to take the scalability and openness of the web and use it to talk to the exponentially exploding range of smart devices. Nearly every company today working on the IoT comes up with the same basic solution: use my server and you'll be fine. But if we really believe there will be trillions of these devices, that just can't scale. We need a system that is open a scalable and by using the URL as a basic building block, we open this up and get the same resilience that the web enjoys.
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC, and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will want to use their existing identities, but these will have credentials already that are (hopefully) i...
All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo, June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be
Container frameworks, such as Docker, provide a variety of benefits, including density of deployment across infrastructure, convenience for application developers to push updates with low operational hand-holding, and a fairly well-defined deployment workflow that can be orchestrated. Container frameworks also enable a DevOps approach to application development by cleanly separating concerns between operations and development teams. But running multi-container, multi-server apps with containers is very hard. You have to learn five new and different technologies and best practices (libswarm, sy...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DragonGlass, an enterprise search platform, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. After eleven years of designing and building custom applications, OpenCrowd has launched DragonGlass, a cloud-based platform that enables the development of search-based applications. These are a new breed of applications that utilize a search index as their backbone for data retrieval. They can easily adapt to new data sets and provide access to both structured and unstruc...
An entirely new security model is needed for the Internet of Things, or is it? Can we save some old and tested controls for this new and different environment? In his session at @ThingsExpo, New York's at the Javits Center, Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, reviewed hands-on lessons with IoT devices and reveal a new risk balance you might not expect. Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, has more than nineteen years' experience managing global security operations and assessments, including a decade of leading incident response and digital forensics. He is co-author of t...
The Internet of Things is a misnomer. That implies that everything is on the Internet, and that simply should not be - especially for things that are blurring the line between medical devices that stimulate like a pacemaker and quantified self-sensors like a pedometer or pulse tracker. The mesh of things that we manage must be segmented into zones of trust for sensing data, transmitting data, receiving command and control administrative changes, and peer-to-peer mesh messaging. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ryan Bagnulo, Solution Architect / Software Engineer at SOA Software, focused on desi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MetraTech, now part of Ericsson, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Ericsson is the driving force behind the Networked Society- a world leader in communications infrastructure, software and services. Some 40% of the world’s mobile traffic runs through networks Ericsson has supplied, serving more than 2.5 billion subscribers.
While great strides have been made relative to the video aspects of remote collaboration, audio technology has basically stagnated. Typically all audio is mixed to a single monaural stream and emanates from a single point, such as a speakerphone or a speaker associated with a video monitor. This leads to confusion and lack of understanding among participants especially regarding who is actually speaking. Spatial teleconferencing introduces the concept of acoustic spatial separation between conference participants in three dimensional space. This has been shown to significantly improve comprehe...
Buzzword alert: Microservices and IoT at a DevOps conference? What could possibly go wrong? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by Jason Bloomberg, the leading expert on architecting agility for the enterprise and president of Intellyx, panelists will peel away the buzz and discuss the important architectural principles behind implementing IoT solutions for the enterprise. As remote IoT devices and sensors become increasingly intelligent, they become part of our distributed cloud environment, and we must architect and code accordingly. At the very least, you'll have no problem fil...
The Domain Name Service (DNS) is one of the most important components in networking infrastructure, enabling users and services to access applications by translating URLs (names) into IP addresses (numbers). Because every icon and URL and all embedded content on a website requires a DNS lookup loading complex sites necessitates hundreds of DNS queries. In addition, as more internet-enabled ‘Things' get connected, people will rely on DNS to name and find their fridges, toasters and toilets. According to a recent IDG Research Services Survey this rate of traffic will only grow. What's driving t...
Today’s enterprise is being driven by disruptive competitive and human capital requirements to provide enterprise application access through not only desktops, but also mobile devices. To retrofit existing programs across all these devices using traditional programming methods is very costly and time consuming – often prohibitively so. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO, President, and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., discussed how you can create applications that run on all mobile devices as well as laptops and desktops using a visual drag-and-drop application – and eForms-buildi...
The Internet of Things promises to transform businesses (and lives), but navigating the business and technical path to success can be difficult to understand. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sean Lorenz, Technical Product Manager for Xively at LogMeIn, demonstrated how to approach creating broadly successful connected customer solutions using real world business transformation studies including New England BioLabs and more.
The recent trends like cloud computing, social, mobile and Internet of Things are forcing enterprises to modernize in order to compete in the competitive globalized markets. However, enterprises are approaching newer technologies with a more silo-ed way, gaining only sub optimal benefits. The Modern Enterprise model is presented as a newer way to think of enterprise IT, which takes a more holistic approach to embracing modern technologies.
Every day we read jaw-dropping stats on the explosion of data. We allocate significant resources to harness and better understand it. We build businesses around it. But we’ve only just begun. For big payoffs in Big Data, CIOs are turning to cognitive computing. Cognitive computing’s ability to securely extract insights, understand natural language, and get smarter each time it’s used is the next, logical step for Big Data.