Services Computing refers to a flexible computing architecture that packages functionality as a suite of interoperable routines that can be used within multiple, separate systems from several business domains. Service computing requires loose coupling of services with operating systems, and other technologies that underlie applications. Functions are separated into distinct self-describing and autonomous units, or services, which developers make accessible via pre-defined interfaces over a network in order to allow users to combine and reuse them in the production of applications. These services communicate with each other by passing data in a well-defined, shared format, or by coordinating an activity between two or more services. Services Computing includes the concepts of Service Oriented Architecture, Mashups, Software as a Service, and Cloud Computing.
Services Computing has become a strategic area of scientific study at IBM Research. IBM Research has a distinguished history in the science and technology of service-oriented business consulting, modeling, transformation, execution, monitoring and management. Foundational contributions have been made in a number of important areas, including: Web services standards, Web services hub framework, federated Web services discovery, dynamic Web services composition, semantic Web services, business performance management, extended business collaboration, business transformation solutions, component business model and SOA, multi-channel e-commerce architecture, access control and security, and industry solution frameworks. IBM researchers have also been actively working wihth the worldwide research communities to help define the research directions of Services Computing.
As shown in the following landscape of the IEEE SERVICES conferences, the area covered by Service computing span different disciplines, from business consulting and enterprise modeling to Web Services and clouds.