One of the latest trends in SOA is Event Processing - more importantly Complex Event Processing.
However , everyone hates the word "Complex", so IBM and other vendors are simply referring to it as Business Event Processing - even though the technology can be used for processing any kind of events.
So what is really event processing? Event processing is nothing but processing those events that arise in the enterprise and making some sense out of them. Have we not been making sense of them with application integration for the last ten years??
The short answer is NO - because while we might have been integrating applications, synchronizing orders and making enterprises have a consistent view of their systems, we never really derived any higher order meaning from the various events that happen in the enterprise.
We never really understood why something happens.
We never understood what multiple events in isolation meant as a whole.
We never maintained any state regarding those events.
In essence, we never had the notion of time while processing events, except for a very rudimentary event sequencing.
About three years ago, I worked on a prototype to demonstrate how event processing could be used in conjunction with our integration broker. It is good to see that these things are now slowlybeing adopted by various enterprises.
BEA has started using Esper as its event processing engine in WebLogic Integration Server and IBM has recently acquired AptSoft.