ESBs in API Gateway's clothing

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Published: Oct 28, 2020
Oct 2020

We've long warned against centralized enterprise services buses and defined "smart endpoints, dumb pipes" as one of the core characteristics of a microservices architecture. Unfortunately, we're observing a pattern of traditional ESBs rebranding themselves, creating ESBs in API gateway's clothing that naturally encourage overambitious API gateways. Don't let the marketing fool you: regardless of what you call it, putting business logic (including orchestration and transformation) in a centralized tool creates architectural coupling, decreases transparency, and increases vendor lock-in with no clear upside. API gateways can still act as a useful abstraction for crosscutting concerns, but we believe the smarts should live in the APIs themselves.