I just listened in on To BPEL or Not To BPEL, the title of which I believe resolves the pronunciation issue once and for all: although the presenter (Danny van der Rijn, principal architect at TIBCO) said “BEH-pull”, clearly it must be “BEE-pull” to make the title work. 🙂
Intended for those with a technical interest in BPEL, van der Rijn went through the history of BPEL from its origins as a melding of IBM’s WSFL and Microsoft’s XLANG, through the BPEL4WS 1.0 specification in 2002, 1.1 in 2003 and the soon-to-be-approved WS-BPEL 2.0. More importantly, he looked at why BPEL emerged: basically, the web services stack didn’t do enough to allow the orchestration of processes.
He then talked about what you’re not going to do with BPEL — it’s not a process modelling notation, it’s not for service creation — and stated that it’s not for portability: he mentions XPDL as a solution in that area (with no mention of BPDM). What I’m seeing, however, is that although BPEL may not have been intended as an interchange format, that’s exactly what it’s being used for in many cases. For many BPM engines, the “E” in BPEL is apocryphal: BPEL is a format that’s used to import process models from other applications, but it’s then converted to an internal (proprietary) format for the actual execution.
He covers off all the changes in 2.0: data, scoping model, message handling, activities and more, and walks through the basic BPEL components in some amount of detail. Overall, a good technical introduction to BPEL.
Unfortunately, about 40 minutes into the presentation, I received an “Invalid Flash Player Version” stating that I needed Flash Player version 8 to view the current content, and I lost all audio and video of the presentation. Flash? I was supposed to be using the Windows Media Player version of the presentation! On24.com really needs to get their act together: changing system requirements mid-presentation is not cool. Even when I installed the new Flash version and did a successful test, I wasn’t able to get back in. Guess that I’ll have to see the last bit in reruns.