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Breaking down business processes into Web services components was the easy part. Weaving them together into manageable, useful services has proved more ambitious.
XML-based business process languages have emerged to manage these event- driven architectures. Now IBM and Oracle have elevated the standing of BPEL4WS (Business Process Execution Language for Web Services, or BPEL for short), granting the language a seat in the core of both companies' new process servers: the Oracle BPEL-PM (BPEL Process Manager) 2.0 and the WBISF (WebSphere Business Integration Server Foundation) 5.1.
These servers are designed for coordinating process interaction and event governance using BPEL. The products integrate into the companies' respective traditional product lines.
For IBM, the integration is a bit clearer. The company has folded WBISF into its WAS (WebSphere Application Server) Enterprise. Although performance was slightly sluggish in my tests, WBISF offers solid capabilities and brings with it a rich variety of resource adaptors to back-end systems and transactional technologies that …