I haven't been hearing much about the Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) lately, although "services orientation" seems to be ubiquitous. I suspect that it has suffered from hype, from mindless adoption as a slogan by people who think that service orientation is merely a technology thing rather than (largely) a cultural attitude; and adoption of the name by vendors who apply it to any old legacy technology they have to sell.
This week, however, ESB has hit me in the face twice. First at a Mulesoft Summit in London, where I was quite impressed. It's open source, it's popular (it claims 3,500 companies in production, adoption by 35% of the Global 500 (although the Global 500 installs lots of stuff that isn't exactly considered strategic) and 150,000+ developers) and I was impressed by the technical people I met at the Summit. Very down-to-earth, very little ESB hype evident. What's not to like?
Then again at the InterSystems Symposium, in connection with Ensemble's future. Ensemble is very serious integration technology that is just about the world's best kept secret, partly because it has got itself identified with the Healthcare sector (although it already has significant installations outside that space). But, it really is the prince of integration tools and, at Symposium, it was talking about adding the extra bits to make it an ESB and moving firmly into the mindset of people in general IT. This'll be 2014, I guess, but I wish it every success.
Just as long as it takes ESB seriously and implements a proper bus model, etc :-).