JavaOne Showcases Web Services

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2002-03-26

JavaOne Showcases Web Services

Sun Microsystems Inc. pulled out all the stops in touting this years JavaOne developer conference in San Francisco as a paean to Web services, with new support for Web services on its low-end Java 2 Micro Edition platform and a road map for delivering Web services support in Java 2 Enterprise Edition.

Richard Green, Suns vice president and general manager of Java and XML software, said Sun is leading an expert group within its JCP (Java Community Process) to develop a small Web service specification, known as JSR 172, which would extend Web services into the world of wireless devices.

"One thing weve been looking at with our partners is how to bring the world of consumer devices to Web services," Green said. JSR 172 is being endorsed by Suns Forte tools group, as well as by Oracle Corp., Metrowerks and Borland Software Corp.

In addition, Sun announced Project Monty, which features two new Java Virtual Machines to support Web services and deliver enhanced performance on consumer devices.

Patricia Sueltz, executive vice president and general manager of Suns Software Systems Group, said this years JavaOne conference will focus on the developers and technology and less on marketing.

One key piece of new technology that Sun, of Palo Alto, Calif., unveiled at the show is its Application Verification Kit, which "makes sure your applications are running right," said Green. The AVK is a portability test environment based on the J2EE 1.3.1 software development kit, and it ensures that an applications code is compatible with J2EE standards.

In short, said Green, "J2EE is da bomb." Calling it the platform for Web services, he said there are 36 licensees that are delivering J2EE-powered applications going forward.

As far as the JCP is concerned, Sun on Tuesday will announce its conciliatory moves toward the open-source movement. The company is expected to "make an announcement about how we are going to grow the community … with luminaries from the open-source world," Green said.

Green listed some figures regarding Javas growth in the market: There have been 100,000 downloads of Suns Java Web Services Developer Pack; there have been 500,000 downloads of J2EE 1.3 over the last five months; there has been a 39 percent growth in application server sales, worth $2.19 billion in 2001; 10 telecommunications carriers deploy Java services; and 15 handset manufacturers offer Java wireless functionality.

Looking at products, Suns own iPlanet unit revved up it Web services application integration framework with a new iPlanet XML Adapter Designer toolkit and WSDL support for iPlanet Integration Server. In addition, Sun will announce J2EE Connector Architecture native support for iPlanet Portal Server and a new portlet API JSR initiative.

HP Ramps Up Web

Services Platform">

HP Ramps Up Web Services Platform

Meanwhile, Hewlett-Packard Co. announced HP Web Services Platform (HP-WSP) 2.0, which features a modular platform that enables developers to build, deploy, register, discover and use Web services. HP-WSP is compatible with HPs application server and extends its capabilities by enabling Java applications to be connected to other applications over the Web, regardless of hardware, operating system or programming environment, bridging the gap between Java and .Net, the Palo Alto company said. Key components of HP-WSP include a SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) server, bundled developer tools, HP Service Composer, HP Registry Composer and trail maps.

HP-WSP will feature a Web services transaction platform as well as an HP Service Composure, an HP Registry Composer and a Process Monitor Interactive feature, which helps with Web services management. HP-WSP 2.0 also delivers new security capability in the way of digital signature support.

"What were announcing puts us on a comparable platform with Microsoft and IBM" in the world of Web services, said Alan Dye, HP-UX developer tools strategist at HP. "Hewlett-Packard is a credible player in Web services."

Also at JavaOne, M7 Corp., also of Palo Alto, unveiled new technology and basically launched its company. M7s developers feature the core of the group that created the Visual Café integrated development environment at Symantec Corp. before its sale to WebGain Inc.

The new M7 suite features tools for building Web applications and Web services that non-programmers can use, said Mansour Safai, the companys CEO.

The suite generates Java Server Pages-based Web applications from a visual development environment and produces XML process descriptions.

M7s Web Foundry features a framework server, a personalization server, a workflow server, a studio development tool and an administrator to enable business users to manage Web applications and Web services once they are deployed.

Web Foundry enables the separate development of an applications presentation layer, application flow, business process flow, business rules, application logic and data integration, Safai said.

Business users tweaking an applications business rules or process flow need only be "as sophisticated as somebody who can use a word processor," Safai said.

The initial model of Web Foundry is focused on intranet applications "and in the next few weeks well have the Web services model," Safai said. "The entire architecture is based on the idea that each business entity is like a Web service and is described in XML."

Oracle Ready to Challenge


Oracle Ready to Challenge?

Oracle, whose CEO, Larry Ellison, leveled a challenge to BEA Systems Inc. at last years JavaOne, is back this year with a new Oracle 9iAS Portal Developers Kit, a new J2ME Developers Kit and new services on the Oracle developer network, said John Magee, senior director of Oracle 9iAS product marketing. Magee said Oracle also will share positive results of its emergence on the application server front.

BEA, however, said it has not begun to see Oracle as a challenge in the application server arena.

John Kiger, BEAs director of product marketing, said BEA will be submitting its recently released WebLogic Workshop development tool -- formerly code-named Cajun -- to the Java Community Process as a standard method of developing and deploying Web services. The San Jose, Calif., company is offering its technology "to simplify the development of Web services and J2EE development," Kiger said.

Simon Phipps, Suns chief technology evangelist, said he has not seen a vendor offer up a complete development environment to the JCP as a standard, but said he saw nothing wrong with it in principle. However, Phipps wondered whether more good might be served if the technology were simply "open sourced."

Iona Corp. is making several announcements at the show, said John Rymer, the companys director of marketing. Iona, whose U.S. headquarters are in Waltham, Mass., will announce its Orbix E2A XMLBus Edition 5.1, which supports compound Web services and includes a UDDI registry. Iona is also announcing Version 5.1 of its application server and a new security framework that incorporates customers own security systems and features XML encryption and signature, Rymer said.

Systinet Corp., of Cambridge, Mass., announced two new products: its WASP (Web Applications and Services Platform) Developer for Eclipse and WASP Security.

WASP Developer for Eclipse automates the process of creating Web services and turns IBMs open-source Eclipse development environment into an environment for Web services creation, debugging, publishing and discovery, said Systinet CTO Anne Thomas Manes.

WASP Security is a Web services security implementation based on the SAML standard, Manes added.

And IBM announced new configurations of its WebSphere Application Server and WebSphere Studio development toolset that support the creation and deployment of more sophisticated Web services applications, said Scott Cosby, manager of IBMs WebSphere Process Integration Team. The products – both Version 4.1 -- support Suns JCA for its integration capabilities.

In addition, IBM announced a new WebSphere UDDI Registry.

IBMs enhancements and new technology represent the move "into another phase of Web services where we require more business support that involves transactions, security and workflow," Cosby said. "The first step to do that is integration," he said. "This allows you to define and build out the complex Web services that are necessary."

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