The Issues Are ...

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2008-04-14 Print this article Print


So what is the issue? Intellectual property? Security? What?

It's all the above. I mean, like in Verizon's case, it used to be if you weren't certified by Verizon and if you didn't have the potential to be a global application, they didn't allow you to be part of the network. And that's a big constraint. We just heard from Google how they opened up the world with their APIs and they don't control their use. What these companies are finding is where they need to help these developers is with their go-to-market, not with constraining the development process itself.

So the trend about community building, do you believe social networking will be a bigger part of that?

It is a part of that today, and it's becoming a bigger part of it. Social networking, RSS, Atom feeds, even creating "spaces" like IBM has in its developerWorks, where people can set up their own avatars and have their own spaces. Yes, it's definitely a phenomenon that's catching on.

What are your views on the whole virtual world trend with things like Second Life, as it impacts developers?

I think it's still very mixed. You asked the question about social networking; our current research indicates that about half of the professional world looks at social networking as something that they want to pull into either their enterprise or their program. There's another half that is saying we don't really know the business value yet, we don't have any plans yet. We're not saying we're not ever going to, but if you ask us today, the answer is no. So there are still some big question marks.

Second Life has not lived up to its expectations from a year ago. There were a number of companies we were working with that said Second Life would take the place of many different things, and it hasn't. So it's been slower to bear fruit.

You're talking existing developer programs? IBM uses it in theirs.

There are a few programs that use it, but again, it's not a big part of their program. It's not a big part of IBM's program. It's very niche. You have to be into it. And if you talk to developers specifically, they'll go, "Why would I do that? It doesn't help me. And I'm all about making money and driving productivity, and that just doesn't do it."

It's a niche. And a number of these companies have to have it in their palette of offerings because it's that Web 2.0 kind of thing. And a lot of these companies are pushing their brand to be part of that Web 2.0 next generation.

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel