Hacking the Secrets of Integration

A little while back I wrote a blog around an internal hackathon we had at TIBCO leveraging our iPaaS solution, TIBCO Cloud Integration. Teams competed in the hackathon using TIBCO Cloud Integration to build connectors to various SaaS systems for application integration.

I learned a lot about preparation, organization, and communication in being part of the team that managed the hackathon. For one, there’s a lot of effort that has to be put in by a lot of people. But beyond the tactical and executional aspects of the event, the hackathon reinforced the trends we are seeing in application integration. Here are 4 things you need to know:

1. Integration is even more pervasive than ever. Broad adoption of SaaS applications as department solutions is driving integration out of the datacenter to the front office. Integration is needed to connect cloud to ground, cloud to cloud, ground to mobile, mobile to everything. It is needed in every aspect of a business. Check out Kai Waehner’s blog on TIBCO’s Hybrid Integration Platform to learn how pervasive integration is.

2. Integration is becoming a front office application. People may term this “connectivity solutions” or “personal automation” but integration is truly becoming more a part of the work environment. In fact, we used our own solution in this area, TIBCO Simplr, to create the registration process for the TIBCO hackathon.

3. Everyone has a role in solving the integration problem. These front office solutions need proper integration, and copy and paste just doesn’t cut it. More and more front office staff are looking for ways to automate the sharing and retrieval of data. Gartner calls these people ad-hoc or citizen integrators. To me, they are just people trying to get their job done.

4. Solution providers understand the importance of integration. Software companies are not creating the monolithic do-it-all systems of the past. They focus on one area and do it well. They also understand that there is value in sharing data they create or manage with systems that use that data for their own needs. Sharing data isn’t just done with data exports, it is now done in a ‘conversation’ through APIs.

These trends are here to stay and are going to evolve even further. The Internet of Things was a trend to watch a few years ago but today it is a reality and is gaining momentum. It’s not unrealistic to believe that IoT will drive a new wave of integration that will impact businesses in an equally fundamental way that SaaS applications have.

While the goal of the hackathon was to celebrate the spirit of innovation, the real take away is how much the world of application integration has changed.

P.S. If you are curious, you can find the list of the hackathon winners on TIBCO Community. Want to test your own hacking skills? Check out our 30-day free trial of TIBCO Cloud Integration.