IBM, 10gen Partner to Push MongoDB for Mobile, Web Development

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2013-06-05

IBM, 10gen Partner to Push MongoDB for Mobile, Web Development

ORLANDO, Fla.—IBM and 10gen, the MongoDB company, have announced they are collaborating on a database development standard to push MongoDB as a core NoSQL database for enterprises building Web and mobile apps.

IBM said the standard is aimed at revolutionizing how Global 5000 companies connect their existing systems with new computing technologies to unlock valuable data and create sophisticated apps for the enterprise. The two companies will bridge the gap between the new era of big data, cloud, mobile and social business technologies with the enterprise world of record databases where enterprises manage massive amounts of data, company officials said.

Speaking at a press event at the IBM Innovate 2013 conference here, Matt Asay, vice president of business development and corporate strategy at 10gen, said, "IBM embraces open source communities. And IBM is working with 10gen in establishing MongoDB as an industry standard for NoSQL databases. But this by no means indicates that IBM will be diminishing its investment in its own proprietary databases." Asay was quick to note that he was not trying to speak for IBM.

The identification of a standard NoSQL database is important because millions of developers designing Web and mobile apps are using popular NoSQL database technology such as MongoDB, and companies need the tools to combine data from these new apps with enterprise databases like IBM's DB2 that power organizations of all sizes today. By embracing MongoDB, IBM is providing mobile developers with the ability to tap into critical data managed by DB2 systems and enable organizations to extend their business through compelling enterprise apps.

Moreover, the move to embrace MongoDB is part of IBM's MobileFirst strategy to enable new mobile computing capabilities for business. With this collaboration, IBM continues to broaden and enable the quick and easy development of mobile apps for the enterprise.

The standard will evolve from the widely adopted MongoDB query language and API to give developers and data administrators flexibility and choice when deploying modern applications. Using IBM Eclipse tools with IBM Worklight Studio, developers can now integrate MongoDB APIs for a consistent app development experience from device to the back end.

"10gen recognizes the importance of open governance models for developing projects for the community," said Max Schireson, CEO at 10gen, in a statement. "IBM has played a critical role in bringing important new technologies to the enterprise, including inventing the relational database and popularizing Structured Query Language (SQL) and Linux."

Furthermore, 10gen looks forward to collaborating with IBM and other parties to evolve the standards for interacting with MongoDB, Schireson said.

With its support of MongoDB, IBM will simplify for millions of developers the delivery of mobile apps that can "tap the vast data resources managed by business systems of record," said Jerry Cuomo, IBM fellow and WebSphere chief technical officer, in a statement. "IBM is making it easier than ever for these critical components of the enterprise to work together, embrace the technology shifts taking place today and extend business to the billions of mobile devices that now exist."

IBM, 10gen Partner to Push MongoDB for Mobile, Web Development

By joining the MongoDB community, IBM pledges, as it has done in other communities, to collaborate on an open standards governance model to ensure MongoDB will be developed in the spirit of the open source world. To help propel the MongoDB community, IBM will contribute its expertise in security and international languages to ensure the standard can be used in any geography.

"We will start with the MongoDB wire protocol and query language and expand from there," Asay said.

IBM will standardize on BSON (Binary JSON), the MongoDB wire protocol and the MongoDB query language in two key application technologies: the elastic, in-memory WebSphere eXtreme Scale data grid platform and the DB2 database platform. 10gen will work with IBM, and other interested parties, to develop these standards. Customers can begin to use these new features later this summer by pairing eXtreme Scale with MongoDB, and by running their MongoDB applications on DB2 directly.

A partner to both 10gen and IBM, as well as a leading provider of open source solutions, Red Hat views this news as positive for the open source community. "IBM has been a critical contributor to the adoption and success of open source technologies, including playing a big role in the growth of Linux," said Paul Cormier, president of products and technologies at Red Hat, in a statement. "We share IBM's excitement about the emergence of MongoDB in mobile and Web applications, and we're excited to see IBM join the MongoDB community."

As the first new technology platform for business to emerge since the World Wide Web, mobile computing represents one of the greatest opportunities for organizations to expand their business. Based on nearly 1,000 customer engagements, 10 mobile-related acquisitions in the last four years, a team of thousands of mobile experts and 270 patents in wireless innovations, IBM MobileFirst offers an array of products that help businesses connect, secure, manage and develop mobile networks, infrastructures and applications.

IBM's move to get behind MongoDB is just the beginning of a series of moves Big Blue will be making in the coming months to further demonstrate its commitment to working with open source communities and extending IBM's reach for key technologies, Angel Diaz, vice president of IBM software standards and cloud, told eWEEK. He mentioned IBM's strong support for the OpenStack open infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) project, and the Chef open source configuration management DevOps tool, as examples of technologies in which IBM has invested in a big way.

Back to the 10gen relationship and MongoDB, Asay added, "This is a big deal. Implicitly, IBM is announcing that NoSQL has come of age and is ready for enterprise prime time. Explicitly, IBM is getting behind MongoDB as an industry standard, and will lend its considerable heft to contribute both code and community guidance to the MongoDB community.

Moreover, Asay said he believes that over the next year the industry will coalesce around a few—very few—NoSQL platforms, and IBM's move highlights that MongoDB has a leadership position among NoSQL databases, something that is confirmed by a variety of other indices.

"IBM has a long history with establishing and helping to improve industry standards, from SQL in 1970 to OpenStack much more recently," Asay said. "We look forward to working with IBM to expand even further MongoDB's popularity with developers and the CIOs who love them."

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