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Data Integration and Mashups

November 10th, 2007 by Jacob Ukelson

I am attending Mashup camp and university here in Dublin (the weather reminds me of a poem that a friend of mine wrote about Boston in February - gray, gray, gray, Gray!). IBM was here in force at Mashup University giving three good presentations (along with live demos) on their mashup stack. They were saying that the products based on this stack should be coming out early next year (we’ll see, since from my experience it can be very difficult to get out a new product in an emerging area in IBM - since you can’t prove that the space\product is valuable enough). They have decided to pull together a whole stack for the enterprise mashup space (the content management layer, the mashup layer and the presentation layer -see my previous post on mashup layers). One thing that struck me, especially when listening to the IBM QEDwiki and Mashup hub presentations, is how much those upcoming set of tools for enterprise mashup creation are starting to resemble  “traditional” enterprise data  integration tools (e.g. Informatica and IBM\Ascential). These new tools allow easy extraction from various data sources (including legacy data like CICS, web data  and DBs), and easy wiring of data flows between operator nodes (sort of a bus concept).  The end result isn’t a DB load as with ETL, but rather a web page to display.  No real cleansing capability yet, but my guess is that will be coming as just another web service that can be called as a node in the flow. So it is like the mashups are the lightweight cousin of ETL - for display rather than bulk load purposes. It will be interesting to follow and see how ETL tooling and mashup tooling come together at IBM, especially since the both the ETL and mashup tools tools are part of the Data Integration group at IBM.

Microsoft seems to be taking another route, a more lightweight desktop like approach, and focused on the presentation layer. Popfly is a tool that also allows you to wire together data extraction (only web data as far as I could tell, though it could be extended to other data types) and manipulation nodes – as you link the nodes, the output of one node becomes the input of the next etc… It seemed very presentation oriented, and I didn’t see any Yahoo! Pipes like functionality or legacy extraction capability.

Serena is presenting tomorrow, it will be interesting to see what direction they have taken.

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2 Responses to “Data Integration and Mashups”

  1. Lauren Cooney Says:

    Hi there,

    Glad you’re enjoying Mashup Camp - I was trying to attend but couldn’t. I’m working on the Info 2.0 (IBM Mashup Starter Kit - ie, QEDWiki and Mashup Hub) vision and community aspects for IBM -

    One thing to keep in mind is that Info 2.0 sits alongside legacy systems, such as the integration pieces you talk about above. I see it as more of a value-add to the legacy apps than a replacement - especially since IT organizations (with Mashups) are going to be in charge of unlocking the content/data for the business user to build the mashup with, and therefore probably at first a bit wary of what info they want to release to the LOB units.

    Would love to hear your thoughts on Info 2.0 - feel free to email me directly.

    Thanks/LC

    Lauren Cooney
    CTO Office, Information Management Group
    IBM

  2. Web 2.0 Mashups Emerging as Integration Tool - Mergers and Integrations Says:

    […] Camp and University in Ireland, which included presentations from IBM, Microsoft, and others, and posted Saturday about his experience thus […]

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