What is agile integration?

If you Google the term “agile integration,” you’ll come up with about 30 million results, but they focus heavily on one area: continuous integration within agile development. That definition of agile integration is based on the build environment.

However, it is possible to have another definition for “agile integration,” one that looks at the platform architecture.

In this definition, “agile” doesn’t relate to the process or the infrastructure, but to the flexibility and adaptability–the agility–of the application architecture. Integration within this context has a more strategic role, as the architectural framework that defines the interoperability of services and with a focus on the application functionality.

Traditional vs. agile as an architectural approach

There are functional similarities between traditional integration and agile integration – like routing, connectivity, and orchestration capabilities. The difference between traditional enterprise application integration and agile integration is not in the tasks performed, but in the strategic perspective of those tasks. Put simply, integration can be viewed as a necessary but often limited part of the infrastructure (traditional) or it could be viewed as the core framework of the application architecture (agile).

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Summit Notes: Tuesday Morning General Session

If you missed it, the keynote speeches are available on the Summit page or on YouTube.

“You don’t need to focus on technology. You need to empower your developers.”

There are certain patterns in the middleware / application development tracks for Red Hat Summit this year, and they revolve a lot around microservices. That makes a certain kind of sense (microservices are the new hotness in app development), but it’s also reflective of a larger current in technology, a continuing push toward … something.

In his opening keynote, Red Hat EVP Paul Cormier noted that one of the themes of Summit 2016 was “dev and ops coming together through common architectures, processes, and platforms.” This echoes major trends in technology — DevOps and architectures, process, and platform as a unifying IT strategy — and yet none of these concepts are really new. Two decades ago, there were developers and operations, there was enterprise architecture, application platforms, and internal processes. So what’s new and what is bringing the urgency now?

I think the difference comes down to speed (and eventually differences in degree become differences in kind). Twenty years ago, an application was released yearly, sometimes even every couple of years. A patch or security update could take a few months to move in the pipeline from development to testing to production.

Now customers expect patches for security vulnerabilities within hours of them being detected, and the expanding number of applications (from consumer mobile apps to internal systems to IoT devices) means that enterprises have potentially dozens of touchpoints and hundreds of services to maintain.

The “modern” part of modern application development isn’t in the app — it’s in the speed.

This year’s Summit kicked off with three interlocking demos, each showing the different paths and progressions that an IT environment will face as they juggle modernizing existing applications and creating new ones within a heterogeneous (and dynamically changing) ecosystem.

 Lifting and Shifting (Windup)

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Reactive architecture for hybrid cloud environments: Red Hat JBoss AMQ 7 is now available

Red Hat JBoss AMQ 7, now available, introduces a new reactive architecture, with an enhanced broker, a new interconnect router, and expanded client support. This new architecture is more responsive and increases both throughput and performance for messaging services.

The JBoss AMQ broker, based on Apache ActiveMQ Artemis, manages connections, queues, topics, and subscriptions. Using innovations from Artemis, the broker has an asynchronous internal architecture, which can increase performance and scalability and enable it to handle more concurrent connections and achieve greater message throughput. Additionally, the high availability topology for AMQ has been redesigned for a “share nothing” architecture — this removes the need for a centralized database or storage location and uses a distributed, highly available topology instead.

The new interconnect router allows unrestricted redundancy. The router automatically reroutes messaging traffic between data centers, cloud services, and geographic locations. As with the broker’s distributed data topology, the interconnect router is the core for distributed messaging services, which allows operations to have redundant, secure, and reliable connectivity and to optimize messaging between services.

JBoss AMQ 7 expands its support of popular messaging APIs and protocols by adding new client libraries (on top of its existing MQTT and AMQP support):

  • Java Message Service (JMS) 2.0
  • JavaScript
  • C++
  • .NET
  • Python

By creating a more distributed topology and broad protocol and language support, JBoss AMQ is a more reactive messaging platform and can support dynamic microservices and other application architectures.

JBoss AMQ is a lightweight, standards-based open source messaging platform designed to enable real-time communication between different applications, services, devices, and the Internet of Things (IoT). It also serves as the messaging foundation for Red Hat JBoss Fuse, Red Hat’s lightweight, flexible integration platform, and is designed to provide the real-time, distributed messaging capabilities needed to support an agile integration approach for modern application development.

Additional resources

Messaging: The Underappreciated Element of Integration

Many people take integration messaging for granted, and many organizations assume that any messaging platform is as fully featured as any other. But in today’s increasingly connected world, with the emergence of major trends in consumer and enterprise technology like mobile, cloud computing, big data, and the Internet of Things, your organization needs to carefully review its messaging platforms and capabilities if you hope to continue to reliably serve your customers and deliver and maintain critical advantages over your competition.

To illustrate how vital and varied messaging platforms can be, let’s explore what exactly messaging is and compare several different approaches to meeting your organization’s messaging needs.

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