Altova is well known for it's flagship product XMLSpy - as anyone who has worked extensively with XML data can tell you. However, they have an entire suite of product offerings, one of which is MapForce. As described on it's website:
"Altova MapForce® 2010 is an award-winning any-to-any graphical data mapping, conversion, and integration tool that maps data between any combination of XML, database, flat file, EDI, Excel 2007+, XBRL, and/or Web service, then transforms data instantly or autogenerates royalty-free data integration code for the execution of recurrent conversions."
Suppose there is a need to integrate legacy flat file delimited data into a web services orchestration within SOA Expressway. Since web services utilize XML for its payload, the legacy data needs to be converted to XML. Although SOA Expressway's Data Transformation services could easily transform the legacy data into XML required by web services, a MapForce data mapping project already exists that easily handles this XML conversion.
Because MapForce allows it's projects to be exported to external executable code, these data mapping projects don't necessarily have to be redeveloped by another integration appliance to be utilized by that appliance.
Using this feature to export Java code, MapForce data conversions can be directly integrated into SOA Expressway. SOA Expressway's Java Extensibility Guide (included in the product) outlines how to incorporate this code to build a customized "data-mapper".
Exporting the "data-mapper" to a Java plugin allows any application with SOA Expressway to utilize it.
This use case provides another demonstration of SOA Expressway working along side with other integration appliances. Even though SOA Expressway has the tools to directly work with legacy data and protocols, it is nice to know how easy extensible it is. MapForce is a solid product with a rich feature set. I found the Java code generated by MapForce very thorough, flexible (allowing for a variety of input and output formats), well commented, and with plenty of error and logging capability.
Interested in trying this out? You can download a 30-day evaluation of SOA Expressway from www.dynamicperimeter.com/download/SOAExpressway and if necessary an evaluation copy of MapForce from Altova's website.