JackBe Aims to Work Magic with SOA and AJAX

JackBe's new Presto platform helps enterprises leverage the power of two popular technology trends: service-oriented architecture and Asynchronous JavaScript and XML.

JackBe has developed a new development and deployment platform that takes advantage of the strengths of both Asynchronous JavaScript and XML-style development and service-oriented architecture.

At the AJAXWorld conference in Santa Clara, Calif., the week of Oct. 2, JackBe, of Chevy Chase, Md., will launch Presto, its new REA (Rich Enterprise Application) platform, which will leverage the strengths of both SOA and AJAX to enable enterprises to tap into underlying business services to create rich Internet applications.

John Crupi, chief technology officer at JackBe, said that AJAX helps to put a face on SOA, and the new Presto platform enables typical business users to become developers and to address their own application needs by building what Crupi refers to as "situational applications."

However, unlike other so-called Web 2.0 technologies that tend to leave governance to the browser, JackBes solution presents a secure, scalable enterprise-grade architecture to provide governance of applications and services, Crupi said.

Indeed, as business logic is distributed to the client, testing, debugging and managing rich clients is becoming a real challenge for enterprises.

And "What companies like JackBe bring to the table is their ability not only to deliver AJAX capabilities, but real enterprise applications that run on the client as well as they would on a server," said Ronald Schmelzer, a Baltimore-based analyst with ZapThink.

Formerly known internally at JackBe by the code name Project Renaissance, the new Presto platform consists of four primary parts: a development tier, a client tier, an AJAX Service Bus, and a service tier consisting of a Service Gateway and Enterprise Mashup Server.

The development tier consists of an Eclipse-based PDE (Power Developer Environment) and a browser-based BDE (Business Developer Environment).

The client tier is based on JackBes existing NQ AJAX development and deployment framework.

The ASB (AJAX Service Bus) is a browser-to-server messaging component that provides secure, bi-directional, single-connection network messaging, Crupi said.

In addition, the ASB brings to the enterprise the capability to extend an ESB (enterprise service bus) and middleware through to the browser, he said.

"If customers were to try to do it themselves, they would have to write a lot of middleware," Crupi said.

Meanwhile, the products Service Gateway enables SOA service governance and security, including user authentication and service access authorization, Crupi said.

The products Enterprise Mashup Server enables user-driven declarative and real-time multi-server and business activity mashups, he said.

Corey Isaacson, chief executive of Rogue Wave Software, a division of Quovadx, based in Englewood, Colo., said customers are demanding cutting-edge solutions that solve real-world business needs.

Rogue Wave Hydra is a high-performance SOA framework for mission-critical applications.

"JackBes Presto REA platform extends that same high level of performance as it consumes and combines the SOA services produced by Hydra within powerful and scalable business applications, while ensuring security and governance," Isaacson said.

/zimages/4/28571.gifClick here to read more about JackBe gaining top engineering and management talent from Sun.

In addition, Isaacson said he expects to see the partnership between Rogue Wave and JackBe "help customers to deploy rich, interactive, and high-performance enterprise applications based on SOA and AJAX."

Moreover, "Users want to be more activity driven," Crupi said. "They want to integrate activities in the form of mashups."

And Crupi said Presto brings "[Sybase] PowerBuilder-like ease and power to the Web, while providing deep security and governance."

The Presto platform is poised to take advantage of the opportunity where enterprises are looking to enable business users to compose services into SOBAs (Service-Oriented Business Applications) that implement business processes in a flexible, agile manner, said Jason Bloomberg, an analyst with ZapThink.

Yet, this is not possible without some sort of governance model, which JackBe has baked into its Presto offering.

The technology will be available in the first quarter of 2007, the company said.

Crupi said the new Web 2.0 applications require a tiered architecture, which JackBe delivers.

"We have a completely tiered architecture—everything we have is pluggable and maintainable," he said.

Crupi and his team joined JackBe from Sun Microsystems Inc. in April. Crupi is a former Sun distinguished engineer.

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