A beauty from the register
BEA to go organic on SOA tools The Register: "Aside from a common look and feel, BEA needs a single composition environment that is simple enough for line-of-business managers to build applications and services that wrap up security, data integration and messaging functionality buried in BEA's AquaLogic middleware layer."
Now I know the folks at BEA relatively well and I doubt that their aim for Aqualogic is quite so high as being the mythical "business people can build IT directly" solution.
Previous claims to this throne include the likes of COBOL, SQL, Business Process tools, UML and lots of other elements. Its undoubtably true that new tools are helping the business get better control over IT systems and make certain, controlled, changes to workflows and paticularly business rules. But using a quote my father was told when he got into IT
"The end to programming is 3 years away, thats as true today as its always been"
The mythical world where business people start doing system mashups to create new organisational dynamics and deploy them into production at the flick of a switch is the philosopher's stone of IT. Its a great sales pitch, but don't bet the business on it becoming a reality. All that happens every time is that IT moves up a notch of abstraction and the business demands ever more complex and dynamic solutions.
Nice marketing line though.