New Products

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2004-04-20 Print this article Print

Adding to the services news, IBM also will introduce new products to support SOAs. The new WebSphere Business Integration Server Foundation product, featuring native support for the Business Process Execution Language (BPEL), enables customers to build and integrate applications in SOAs, Cosby said. The WebSphere Business Integration Server Foundation supports the Common Event Infrastructure and the Java Developers Kit 1.4, and its tooling is based on the Eclipse open-source development framework.
In addition, the IBM WebSphere Studio Application Developer Integration Edition 5.1, which will be released at the same time, will enable developers to visually develop and deploy BPEL applications, Cosby said. "We want to make sure customers have all the tools and technologies to take advantage of service-oriented architectures," he said.
"IBMs solution is evolving with this announcement toward a more integrated platform based on a single runtime stack built on J2EE [Java 2 Enterprise Edition] and Web services standards," said Mike Gilpin, an analyst with Forrester Inc. of Cambridge, Mass. "This is an important step along the road to unify the IBM solution onto that stack, which will culminate with its complete unification on the WebSphere stack about a year from now," Gilpin said. "In the meantime, this release places a greater proportion of IBMs solution on that unified platform, especially with its added sup-port for BPEL for business process management." Meanwhile, New York-based Cendant Corp.—a major travel and real estate services firm that has standardized on IBM hardware and its WebSphere application server and DB2 database—said it also plans to use IBMs technology as the centerpiece of its SOA strategy, according to Bryan Harwood, director of platform architecture at the company. Robert Wiseman, chief technology officer (CTO) at Cendant, said the company is developing an SOA framework based on IBMs technology. He said the IBM plan is appealing because "by defining the interfaces to the components, you ensure reusability of services across the organization." Wiseman said Cendants services are hosted by IBM Global Services, but the move to SOA "is not something weve jumped into. Weve tried to stay ahead of the curve to help our customers keep maximizing their legacy systems." The move to Web services and SOAs was part of the companys roadmap, he said. Wiseman said Cendant started out with an XML solution for integration and, two years ago, evolved that to Web services. "Weve taken that approach, and now were going to take it to a full SOA," he said. "So, components are available and reusable throughout the organization," he said. But Wiseman said Cendants SOA transition will not be complete until the fourth quarter of this year. Al Smith, CTO of the Adaptive Management Technology Office in Hewlett-Packard Co.s software organization, said, "We see some of the large ISVs using SOA as a design pattern. At HP, were focused on being able to manage those environments." Smith noted HPs acquisition of Talking Blocks as evidence that the company has been involved in the SOA space. Talking Blocks developed SOA infrastructure technology. "It looks like IBM is going to drive middleware sales and more global services," Smith said. "In general, its a pretty good plan, but the most expensive part of it is the integration aspect. The more you implement SOA design patterns should translate into a cut in costs." "Basically, IBM has gotten the SOA gospel and is really taking it to heart in the way they build their products and deliver their services from here on forward," said Ronald Schmelzer, an analyst with ZapThink LLC of Waltham, Mass. "Rather than announcing a single product or service, this SOA announcement kicks off a major strategy for IBM around what they see is a combined effort from multiple product and service groups to meet the increasing demand for loosely coupled, distributed, standards-based computing that SOA represents." Check out eWEEKs Developer & Web Services Center at for the latest news, reviews and analysis in programming environments and developer tools. Be sure to add our developer and Web services news feed to your RSS newsreader or My Yahoo page:  

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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