Mashups Gaining Traction in the Enterprise

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New Real Story Group research recommends caution

Portals and Content Integration Report

Review your requirements carefully and consider these products as an adjunct to more feature-rich portal technology instead of standalone technology

Enterprises that need “quick- and-dirty,” dashboard-style applications that tap multiple internal systems are increasingly experimenting with more lightweight integration technologies such as mashups, according to new research released today by independent analyst firm Real Story Group (formerly CMS Watch).

Mashup technology enables enterprises to aggregate content and services from other (usually pre-existing) applications to create new services. The resulting applications are frequently coupled with JavaScript-based “gadgets,” which provide greater flexibility to where and how composite applications are exposed to end users.

Mashup tools are growing in popularity and provide a good trade-off between ease of development and functionality for two reasons:
1) They are more powerful than simplistic iFrame or web clipping/scraping approaches
2) As web-based integration frameworks, they are easier to deploy than traditional enterprise application integration (EAI) platforms

The Real Story Group, however, found that mashup tools are not always cheaper or simpler. “Don’t assume that mashup technology is always the lighter, easier alternative to enterprise portals,” notes Real Story Group Principal Alan Pelz-Sharpe. “In some cases, mashup technology is quite expensive, and far from easy to manipulate, especially for the very business users that vendors claim to empower.”

The Real Story Group concludes that mashup technologies remain comparatively young. “Review your requirements carefully and consider these products as an adjunct to more feature-rich portal technology instead of standalone technology,” concludes Real Story Group Analyst Apoorv Durga.

Today's newly updated Portals and Content Integration research includes evaluations of four new products: WSO2 Mashup Server, IBM Mashup Center, JackBe Presto, and Kapow Web Data Server, in addition to eleven enterprise portal solutions.

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Jarrod Gingras