Nicknamed Swordfish, the Eclipse project is meant to result in widgetry used in developing and deploying a wide swath of software from embedded programs to enterprise applications.
In this respect, its goal is different from existing SOA environments most of which are targeted at just the enterprise environment and require a good deal of memory and processing resources.
The Swordfish Project takes a different approach and figures all components could be potentially replaced by alternatives with smaller footprints as good for the enterprise as for resource-restricted embedded and mobile devices.
Anyway, Swordfish 1.0 is supposed to be out by the end of Q3. But other than the base code, the project has so far only come up with a logo and little else. And there’s a lot left to do.
Deutsche Post kick-started the project by contributing its Service Backbone code for the initial framework as well as a messaging plug-in, a service discovery plug-in and a management plug-in.
It is being moved to Eclipse’s Open Services Gateway Initiative (OSGi) so it can also take advantage of Eclipse’s Service Component Architecture (SCA) and Java Business Integration (JBI).
These technologies will make Swordfish usable for server-side applications.
Swordfish will be the first attempt to implement both the SCA and JBI SOA standards, which have to date been politically competitive, the first advanced by IBM and the second by Sun. Swordfish could use them for complementary purposes.
The project, which pushes Eclipse further into the server side, was initiated by a German SOA start-up called Sopera GmbH.
Sopera co-managing director Ricco Deutscher remarks that the Deutsche Post code is mature, having been used for the last six years by the huge logistics company.
Swordfish could be a complete SOA framework with the addition of either open source or commercial messaging, BPEL, security and registry.