Systems Integration

Systems integration paradigm implies in the beginning two or more systems being able to communicate. The integration can be as easy as sending data through a serial cable or as complex as running workflows from multiple enterprises in a grid of server farms.
The communication is done using interfaces and protocols. Interfaces can be simple or complex.

Hardware interfaces

The world of bits. The hardware interfaces are best used in industrial environments where signals are gathered and processed into central processing units. SCADA (Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition) systems uses still these hardware interfaces with success.

Socket interfaces

There was a world when all communication has been done using TCP sockets. Communication protocols have been developed specifically to support the socket communication: TCP, UDP, and later FTP, HTTP and all that comes with them.
Using a socket language seemed to be the answer to ultimate systems integration. Until one realized that just sending data to be parsed and processed was not enough.

Software interfaces

It is the world of launching processes on remote servers. It is the time where workflow management systems just began to appear.
Different technologies and derived applications have been developed to support the systems integration of the years after dotcom. The integration already means running separate processes over several systems.

Communication interfaces

Standard protocols, standard definition, standard integration, given the fact two or more systems are allowed to communicate with each-other. All you need is a contract definition, couple of end points and some security descriptors.
The rest is just generic process.