If you’re in Java, and in Atlanta, tonight is AJUG, and you should drop in if you get the chance. The topic will be Service Oriented Architecture, and the presenter looks qualified enough, though there’s a definite risk of degeneration into a vendor-specific presentation (though AJUG has done a good job of reigning this in recently). Details are here.
Though many could rightly criticize SOA as a mere repackaging of SOAP and Web Services, I’ll be going for the broader understanding of usage patterns and best practices – not as much for the nuts and bolts of how to implement SOA (alternately stands for Same Old Architecture). An interesting wrinkle in SOA in the modern web development era is the idea that you could use the same web service to feed B2B applications AND as a source of data for an AJAX component (Amazon.com could easily do this).