Welcome!

Microservices Expo Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Mehdi Daoudi, Pat Romanski, Flint Brenton

Related Topics: Microservices Expo, Java IoT

Microservices Expo: Article

Web Services and SOA - Sexy Clients and Programatic Oaths

The prototype system would talk to the customer's actual back end systems using web services and SOA

Recently I was called in at the last minute to help out with a sales opportunity.  The team had been working hard on a proposal for many months, during which they’d built a large working prototype system that talked to the customer’s actual back end systems using web services and SOA.  To their surprise however it had been slammed in the demos, because the user interface (the last part the sales team had put together) had been thrown together using just default fonts and colors, and basic text boxes and buttons.  Even though the whole tender was based on who could put together the most robust system that recognized the customer’s complex IT architecture, it had all fallen down merely because it didn’t look good enough.  The developers were disheartened, much the same way that a car engineer must be when no-one is prepared to look under the hood and appreciate the quality of their work because there isn’t a cupholder and CD player.

To fix things a colleague and I had two days before the sales team could go back before the customer.  We told the manager who’d asked for our help that all we could in that time was sex up the GUI.  He insisted that we shouldn’t do this, and instead should provide more engineering so that the prototype could work in a fail safe disconnected mode, because the customer had insisted that they didn’t want glitz and could only be wowed by substance.  Cause we’re wise and arrogant though, we instead spent two days doing nothing more than adding tissue paper sparkle to the existing GUI.  We replaced the widget toolkit for one that had a flat web look and feel to it, as well as adding stuff like images of credit card types on the payment screens together with twisty expandable GUI sections using gradient colored separators.  One part of the system involved booking a hotel room for which we painted a map of the hotel floor with hover help for room numbers and types.  It was total and utter fakeware, and had we not run out of time we were going to have a background thread that would draw animations to show which rooms were occupied and empty in real time.  Finally we threw in an obligatory embedded web browser and a splash screen before the sales team went back to the customer.

It was a total hit.  The client bought it and signed us up for the whole project. Our competitors felt cheated, and I got nice ego warming e-mails from senior management saying how grateful they were for my efforts, etc…

In some ways thought I felt rather like I’d broken some kind of programmer’s equivalent of the Hippocratic oath.  “I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those programmers in whose steps I walk, and I will remember there is science to code as well as fluff, and that warmth, sympathy and understanding will outweigh the animated GIF or cheap piece of GUI smoke and mirrors”.  Yeah, right.  At the end of it we’re all just descended from apes, and how something looks is always going to trigger some atavistic assumption about how well it tastes.  I’m torn between bemoaning this fact, or accepting it and unashamedly maximizing it.  Magazine publishers who want someone to buy or read their stuff work this to their advantage when they put eye-candy pictures and silver bullet attention grabbing headlines on their front cover.  Maybe I should do likewise for a blog entry and call it “Sexy clients ?”.

posted Tuesday, 18 April 2006

More Stories By Joe Winchester

Joe Winchester, Editor-in-Chief of Java Developer's Journal, was formerly JDJ's longtime Desktop Technologies Editor and is a software developer working on development tools for IBM in Hursley, UK.

Comments (2) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
SYS-CON India News Desk 04/18/06 02:31:22 PM EDT

Recently I was called in at the last minute to help out with a sales opportunity. The team had been working hard on a proposal for many months, during which they'd built a large working prototype system that talked to the customer's actual back end systems using web services and SOA. To their surprise however it had been slammed in the demos, because the user interface (the last part the sales team had put together) had been thrown together using just default fonts and colors, and basic text boxes and buttons.

SYS-CON Italy News Desk 04/18/06 02:02:07 PM EDT

Recently I was called in at the last minute to help out with a sales opportunity. The team had been working hard on a proposal for many months, during which they'd built a large working prototype system that talked to the customer's actual back end systems using web services and SOA. To their surprise however it had been slammed in the demos, because the user interface (the last part the sales team had put together) had been thrown together using just default fonts and colors, and basic text boxes and buttons.

@MicroservicesExpo Stories
Enterprises are moving to the cloud faster than most of us in security expected. CIOs are going from 0 to 100 in cloud adoption and leaving security teams in the dust. Once cloud is part of an enterprise stack, it’s unclear who has responsibility for the protection of applications, services, and data. When cloud breaches occur, whether active compromise or a publicly accessible database, the blame must fall on both service providers and users. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben Johnson, C...
Most of the time there is a lot of work involved to move to the cloud, and most of that isn't really related to AWS or Azure or Google Cloud. Before we talk about public cloud vendors and DevOps tools, there are usually several technical and non-technical challenges that are connected to it and that every company needs to solve to move to the cloud. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Stefano Bellasio, CEO and founder of Cloud Academy Inc., will discuss what the tools, disciplines, and cultural...
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Me...
With the rise of DevOps, containers are at the brink of becoming a pervasive technology in Enterprise IT to accelerate application delivery for the business. When it comes to adopting containers in the enterprise, security is the highest adoption barrier. Is your organization ready to address the security risks with containers for your DevOps environment? In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Chris Van Tuin, Chief Technologist, NA West at Red Hat, will discuss: The top security r...
‘Trend’ is a pretty common business term, but its definition tends to vary by industry. In performance monitoring, trend, or trend shift, is a key metric that is used to indicate change. Change is inevitable. Today’s websites must frequently update and change to keep up with competition and attract new users, but such changes can have a negative impact on the user experience if not managed properly. The dynamic nature of the Internet makes it necessary to constantly monitor different metrics. O...
Agile has finally jumped the technology shark, expanding outside the software world. Enterprises are now increasingly adopting Agile practices across their organizations in order to successfully navigate the disruptive waters that threaten to drown them. In our quest for establishing change as a core competency in our organizations, this business-centric notion of Agile is an essential component of Agile Digital Transformation. In the years since the publication of the Agile Manifesto, the conn...
The nature of the technology business is forward-thinking. It focuses on the future and what’s coming next. Innovations and creativity in our world of software development strive to improve the status quo and increase customer satisfaction through speed and increased connectivity. Yet, while it's exciting to see enterprises embrace new ways of thinking and advance their processes with cutting edge technology, it rarely happens rapidly or even simultaneously across all industries.
Many organizations are now looking to DevOps maturity models to gauge their DevOps adoption and compare their maturity to their peers. However, as enterprise organizations rush to adopt DevOps, moving past experimentation to embrace it at scale, they are in danger of falling into the trap that they have fallen into time and time again. Unfortunately, we've seen this movie before, and we know how it ends: badly.
These days, APIs have become an integral part of the digital transformation journey for all enterprises. Every digital innovation story is connected to APIs . But have you ever pondered over to know what are the source of these APIs? Let me explain - APIs sources can be varied, internal or external, solving different purposes, but mostly categorized into the following two categories. Data lakes is a term used to represent disconnected but relevant data that are used by various business units wit...
There is a huge demand for responsive, real-time mobile and web experiences, but current architectural patterns do not easily accommodate applications that respond to events in real time. Common solutions using message queues or HTTP long-polling quickly lead to resiliency, scalability and development velocity challenges. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ryland Degnan, a Senior Software Engineer on the Netflix Edge Platform team, will discuss how by leveraging a reactive stream-based protocol,...
Today most companies are adopting or evaluating container technology - Docker in particular - to speed up application deployment, drive down cost, ease management and make application delivery more flexible overall. As with most new architectures, this dream takes significant work to become a reality. Even when you do get your application componentized enough and packaged properly, there are still challenges for DevOps teams to making the shift to continuous delivery and achieving that reducti...
Many organizations adopt DevOps to reduce cycle times and deliver software faster; some take on DevOps to drive higher quality and better end-user experience; others look to DevOps for a clearer line-of-sight to customers to drive better business impacts. In truth, these three foundations go together. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 21st Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, industry experts will discuss how leading organizations build application success from all...
The last two years has seen discussions about cloud computing evolve from the public / private / hybrid split to the reality that most enterprises will be creating a complex, multi-cloud strategy. Companies are wary of committing all of their resources to a single cloud, and instead are choosing to spread the risk – and the benefits – of cloud computing across multiple providers and internal infrastructures, as they follow their business needs. Will this approach be successful? How large is the ...
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
"NetApp's vision is how we help organizations manage data - delivering the right data in the right place, in the right time, to the people who need it, and doing it agnostic to what the platform is," explained Josh Atwell, Developer Advocate for NetApp, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
The “Digital Era” is forcing us to engage with new methods to build, operate and maintain applications. This transformation also implies an evolution to more and more intelligent applications to better engage with the customers, while creating significant market differentiators. In both cases, the cloud has become a key enabler to embrace this digital revolution. So, moving to the cloud is no longer the question; the new questions are HOW and WHEN. To make this equation even more complex, most ...
One of the biggest challenges with adopting a DevOps mentality is: new applications are easily adapted to cloud-native, microservice-based, or containerized architectures - they can be built for them - but old applications need complex refactoring. On the other hand, these new technologies can require relearning or adapting new, oftentimes more complex, methodologies and tools to be ready for production. In his general session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Brown, Solutions Marketi...
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
Today companies are looking to achieve cloud-first digital agility to reduce time-to-market, optimize utilization of resources, and rapidly deliver disruptive business solutions. However, leveraging the benefits of cloud deployments can be complicated for companies with extensive legacy computing environments. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Craig Sproule, founder and CEO of Metavine, will outline the challenges enterprises face in migrating legacy solutions to the cloud. He will also prese...
DevOps at Cloud Expo – being held October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real r...