Sybase Courts Developers With Free Software

The company is giving a sneak peek at the upcoming update of its enterprise database and developer edition of SQL Anywhere Studio.

Database maker Sybase Inc. is giving it all away.

The Dublin, Calif., company on Monday announced a program to give customers a sneak peek at the upcoming update of its enterprise database, Adaptive Server Enterprise 12.5.1. It also announced it will hand over a copy of a Developer Edition of SQL Anywhere Studio 9—the companys mobile and embedded database—to any developer who joins the iAnywhere Solutions Developer Community.

The announcements come as Sybase gets ready to greet about 2,000 devotees at its annual TechWave Conference, which gets under way on Tuesday in Orlando, Fla.

The free Early Adopter Program starts immediately and will be in effect until ASE 12.5.1 is generally available in the fall. New features in ASE 12.5.1 are designed to lower total cost of ownership for database-driven applications, including self-management, content management and integration technologies, and enhanced security and privacy controls.

Participants in the Early Adopter Program get their hands on the beta software fast and also get the chance to offer feedback. Sybase provides more information on the program on its Web site.

With regard to giving away SQL Anywhere Studio 9 Developer Edition, Sybase Senior Group Product Manager Mike Paola said Sybase is out to arm developers who are investigating emerging technologies such as Wi-Fi. "Developers are saying they want to start experimenting with those technologies and need an easy and convenient way to get started," said Paola, in Waterloo, Ontario. "By having a free developer edition, were arming them with the technology to easily get started."

Sybase tied the free edition to its developer community because it has extensive resources to help wireless newbies, Paola said, including white papers, code snippets and consultants opinions. Issues that arise specifically when developing for handhelds include those that pertain to screen sizes, input mechanisms, interrupted network connectivity, storage and synchronization of data on local devices, attempts to limit transmission of data due to coverage or cost issues, and ability to integrate with existing enterprise systems, Paola said—and such issues are what the developer community is geared to help resolve.