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From Alex Boisvert <boisv...@intalio.com>
Subject Re: are we really gonna end up with 1 engine anyway?
Date Mon, 20 Feb 2006 17:04:47 GMT
James Strachan wrote:

> Right now today the Sybase code is geared more towards being a 
> generic orchestration/workflow engine that today supports BPEL 1.1 
> and can support other orchestration/workflow languages and could be 
> ported to 2.0 without huge amounts of effort. PXE is specifically 
> geared towards BPEL 2.0 as its primary design which could well be a 
> good thing if you want a BPEL 2.0 engine - though I do find the PXE 
> code harder go grok  - but maybe that's because its more BPEL 2.0 
> specific.

James, I'd like add some precision to your comment because it may be
interpreted in different ways.

While it is true that PXE specifically targets BPEL 1.1/2.0 as its
primary goal it does not mean that PXE is limited to, or constrained by
this objective. PXE is designed to be extensible and is built on a
strong fundation (the Jacob virtual machine) which provides ample
opportunity to extend PXE into various other orchestration/workflow
capabilities beyond what is prescribed by BPEL. I will echo your
sentiment that PXE may be harder to grok, possibly because of its more
complex architecture and because as it stands, its scope is larger than
BPEL alone and includes -- among other things -- a microkernel, a
SOAP/HTTP binding, integration with 3rd-party transaction managers (e.g.
Minerva) and a service framework similar to JBI. This allows PXE to run
standalone without an application server or a JBI environment.

We certainly hope to reduce the size of the PXE codebase to make it
easier to grasp and also make it more agile. As a matter of fact, we are
considering adopting JBI as our "native" service framework, and
leveraging existing JBI components + J2EE environments to trim the
codebase even further. Without a doubt, ServiceMix and Gernimo
integration are beneficial to the project.

Which brings us back to the original questions about goals of the
project. Since we are at such early stage of the project, I believe it
would be easier to build concensus on goals than the relative merits of
each engine. What I hear from you is that the ServiceMix project is
interested in a small embeddable orchestration engine. I, for one, would
be very much in agreement that whatever to come out of the Ode project
should be easily reusable and embeddable, and be as small as possible
considering the constraints of other goals (e.g. implementing BPEL 2.0).


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