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By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2004-04-05 Print this article Print

BEA hopes to catch up with IBM, which recently disclosed information regarding its plans for ESB support, and Microsoft, with its upcoming Indigo platform. Some see Indigo as merely a framework for creating ESB, but either way, the earliest versions of Indigo will not be available until next year, with the final version going into "Longhorn" in 2006 or beyond.

"An ESB is important because people want a good way to implement a service-oriented architecture using Web services," said Eric Newcomer, chief technology officer at Iona, in Waltham, Mass. Ionas Artix product is considered an ESB. "The ESB provides additional enterprise qualities of service to Web services interfaces," he said.

IBM helps customers build ESBs today through its MQ technology and WebSphere. Its offering in this space, however, will not be a single product. "Its not a new product; its going to be capabilities in our products," said Scott Cosby, director of WebSphere business integration product management, in Somers, N.Y. "We dont expect to have an ESB product that does anything you want. Our goal is to augment the products we currently have. Its not a one-size-fits-all, buy-it-off-the-shelf ESB."

Cosby said IBM will start incrementally "adding more and more support [for ESBs] in the next eight to 10 months."

Chuang said BEA will be pushing new technology in several areas.

"We have an endless appetite for doing new things," Chuang said. The next major version of WebLogic is perhaps a year off.

"Were doing mobility," Chuang said. "We have a huge management project going on. The bus architecture addition will be a new thing for us. Therell be a bunch of new things inside integration. Were transforming integration even further. And were merging more the process of development and integration. So theres a lot of stuff cooking."

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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.

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