Our partner was up late last night making necessary changes to their current architecture to support integration.
This primarily consists of identifying the intermediate storage for incoming and outgoing data (queuing). Once we defined where the data was going to live, we covered how to process it and further more, how to do it all in a recoverable fashion.
At the end of today, we had a data model to play with, test scripts to populate the data model and a windows service that would process the data.
The teams worked really well together considering the language barrier.
One caveat to this is that our partner sandbox actually lives in Dallas, TX. Our partners office network was a 10MB connection that was nearly fully utilized. What this meant to our test efforts is that the environment is fine for a functional integrated test, which is its intent.
However, we quickly identified that the connection is next to useless for remote administration of our Dallas sandbox. We discovered this when we needed to make minor contract changes for our inventory service, it took nearly 2 hours to get the very minor changes published, most of this was due to access via Citrix to our MK network. Luckily, this is isn't considered 'normal' use, but its definitely something to consider!
The partners data center in Shanghai, which is where their code base typically runs, has a much better connection. In the event that the office network becomes completely saturated, they can publish their code to their 'test' environment in their data center for additional, or more complete testing.
In the meantime, to expediate our process, I wound up hosting our MK Dallas sandbox environment on my local laptop, which made it much easier to setup various test conditions and to make change.