Customer Reviews: Service Oriented Architecture For Dummies
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on January 17, 2010
This is a good SOA start book
I recommend it to beginners
Easy to read and flows nicely
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on May 8, 2009
A very good book for anyone starting on SOA.I have bought this book for IBM 669 SOA Certification and it is helping me quite a bit.REcommend to others also
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on April 4, 2009
Not really worth the time to read (let alone the expense). Covers the basics but not well enough to make a lasting impression and is somewhat miss guided towards a vendors rather than practitioners view of Service-oriented Architecture.

I have found more useful information free on the web - just started out with Wikipedia and went from there.
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on February 1, 2009
If you are not an IT guy and for a long time you have been thinking that SOA is only related to IT, then this book is a good starting point to understand, and make others understand, that SOA has everything to do with business.

Using simple examples, this book will guide you through the different elements of SOA and will help you to understant it's potential.
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on May 6, 2008
I like this book because it is easy to read and it explains basic SOA concepts. This book will help you understand the major concepts but it is not a book that can get you started building services, SOA infrastructure and middleware.

And it is obviously not for dummies!
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on March 6, 2008
Reading this book may provide you with a few good buzzwords at IT cocktail parties, but forget about understanding what SOA is, and how it gets done in the real world.

Having worked in the IT industry as a consultant and executive for a long time, and having been on both sides of the business/technical divide, the title of this book intrigued me. So I thought I'd give it a shot, to see how SOA might be simply explained from a business, non technical point of view. But after reading the first 150 pages of the book and skimming through the rest, I quicky realized the book is useless. Both for business oriented people, and even more for technical people. In fact, the single web page SOA entry at Wikipedia will provide one with more knowledge and understanding of SOA than this whole book, in probably a 10th of the time.

SOA is real, (Amazon and Google are first rate implementation examples) but you would not know this from this book. Nor know how to go about implementing it. Extremely verbose and vague, the book contents seem to epitomize the bad rap executive level consultants sometimes get when they are accused of being payed large sums of money for essentially engaging in buzzwords compliance, all with dubious results.

Next time someone asks you if your enterprise is doing SOA, just say: "Of course we are! We have been re-orienting our IT infrastructure towards a business service centric architecture, with loosely coupled reusable software components!" And if you get paid for your answers, you can keep going on and on with similar language based on each of the words above.
Heck, if you are a consultant, you could even write an entire book! That will be good advertising for your business, and at 300+ pages, nobody will suspect that your understanding of SOA is conceptual and superficial.
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on March 4, 2008
This is a goog book to get the basics. Some of the analogies are really good, but they seem to repeat them over and over. Decent reference though
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on December 25, 2007
I suppose that, entering into any of the "Dummies" series, one should expect no more than introductory material, the corollary being that more detailed, technical knowledge would lie elsewhere. Thus it is with this book. If you are prepared for a surface buzzing of a broad range of topics relevant to SOA, including such useful matters as the business justification, the parts of an SOA necessarily to make it all work harmoniously, and even the different philosophies from various vendors (Oracle, SAP, etc.), then you'll be happy with this book. If, however, you're looking for a comprehensive treatment, that might begin with the business aspects and general structure, but then dive into the technologies, you'll find this book a disappointment.

I have two specific criticisms that cause my rating to be only three stars:
(1) while the textual coverage of SOA components--governance, security, the repository, and the registry, etc.--is clear, I quite wish that the diagrams were true architecture diagrams, UML-based. The material would have been clearer had it been represented with use case diagrams, activity diagrams, and sequence diagrams, instead of rectangles with lines between them.
(2) My other criticism goes to the gap between what the table of contents suggests, vs. what information the book delivers. That is, when a prospective reader is deciding whether to invest time in a book, typically the table of contents yields reliable information. Sometimes, though, a table of contents overreaches what the book itself is able to achieve. Such is the case here. For example, the Part V table of contents suggests that within would like a treatise on each major vendor's approach to SOA, including IBM, HP, BEA, Oracle, SAP, and JBoss. Alas, the details were too sketchy to be useful.

In brief, then, if the reader is willing to invest eight hours (that's how long this reader required, cover to cover) to gain a broad understanding of SOA, then this might be the book for you. If you're looking for a detailed treatment, or a comprehensive guide, look elsewhere.
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on September 9, 2007
I have always been seriously put off by the "Dummies" series. I would like to buy books that assume some intelligence on the part of the reader. I don't like being talked down to.

But this book doesn't do that. Instead it explains concepts clearly, and has been a great help to me in understanding the clouds of jargon that surround this topic. The explanation of the components of SOA and how they hook together is excellent!

Because I am not yet directly involved, I cannot judge the accuracy of their details (and of course, they may change over time), but since the objective is to get the main concepts across, I believe the authors are successful.

I really wish, though, that the series were called "Achieving Buzzword Compliance in ...".
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on August 30, 2007
The one thing that most people agree upon for SOA is that there is a lot of confusion. This book unfortunately adds to that confusion.

If you want to know what is going on today in what is being called SOA, this book is fine. It takes a look at what is out there, and reverse engineers it and describes the pieces. Unfortunately what is being done in general and what SOA is supposed to be is quite different.

If you were interested in what SOA is SUPPOSED to be, this book is very far off the mark. If you look at Thomas Erl's definitive books on SOA, you will see a vast difference from SOA as described in this book. Some of the chapters are overviews, for those with little or no existing knowledge of SOA, which is probably what you really wanted.

This SOA for Dummies book might be summarized as:
* SOA is good
* Everybody will be doing it
* Lots of companies are working in that area to implement SOA
* Lots of companies are creating SOA related products
* If you don't go SOA, your company will fail
* There is confusion
* We are a consulting company to help you

But my guess is you already knew this.

One aspect that is missing is an emphasis on open source SOA products. This book focuses primarily on commercial products. Even the commercial sources are continuing to donate parts of their systems to open source, so what was commercial is now open source. That is the continuing trend.

I would say take this book as light reading (even though it's 350 pages), but don't try to remember too much of it. Don't presume the people implementing SOA really know what SOA is all about. I've seen SOA described formally in detailed all the way to the other extreme where some people call everything on the Web as part of SOA, which it isn't. So when you hear someone talk about SOA, be really skeptical.

This book tells you what is going on, not what should be going on. The question for you is just what to you want to implement. Because you want to do it right the first time. Calling anything that has a "service" as part of SOA, won't get you there.
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