BEA Advances Liquid Computing Plan

 
 
By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2004-05-25
 
 
 
BEA Systems laid out its service-oriented architecture (SOA) vision Tuesday in a strategy it calls Liquid Computing, formerly known as Project Sierra.

Speaking at the companys annual BEA eWorld conference in San Francisco, Alfred Chuang, BEA Systems Inc.s CEO, said Liquid Computing builds on BEAs already established SOA focus and features new products and services that will drive greater business integration, productivity and cost savings.

Among the new announcements is BEA WebLogic Server Process Edition, which includes features of the WebLogic Integration Server to enable developers to more easily create SOAs. The product combines application development with business process management, the company said.

Click here to read an eWEEK interview with Chuang on BEA expanding its reach.

In addition, BEA announced a new life-cycle support policy for BEA WebLogic Platform 8.1, which extends the support for the platform to five years—with two years extended support available under additional terms, the company said.

The new policy provides support for two years longer than that of the nearest leading competitor, BEA officials said.

Chuang also announced the companys enterprise service bus (ESB) project, known as Project QuickSilver, and the mobile element of the Liquid Computing strategy, which is code-named Project Alchemy.

Read more here about BEA boarding the enterprise service bus.

Project Alchemy is a messaging and information model in the back end that describes information models and their relations to data and services. Alchemy is aimed at occasionally connected devices and systems and enhances the companys ESB strategy.

"Alchemy is focused on the sometimes-connected client, or basically those Web Services consumers that arent always on the network," said Ronald Schmelzer, an analyst with ZapThink LLC, in Waltham, Mass.

"So, to include them in an SOA, one has to use asynchronous messaging protocols and other reliable Web services mechanisms. Much of what is written about ESBs centers on the fact that they extend message-oriented middleware with Web services and service container interfaces," Schmelzer said.

"Since message queuing and interacting with heterogeneous—and perhaps sometimes-connected—systems is part of that ESB message, this Alchemy feature set definitely adds some potency to BEAs offering."

BEA also announced that the Apache Software Foundation has accepted BEAs Project Beehive as an open-source project in the Apache community. Project Beehive is the companys strategy to open-source the runtime application framework of BEA WebLogic Workshop, the Java development environment that the company touts as easy to use. The effort will now be known as Apache Beehive.

BEA last week announced its plans to open-source the WebLogic Workshop framework in an effort to help make the companys Java development platform standard across enterprise application development shops.

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