FC December 2005  


December 30, 2005

Open Source ESB

I have just come across ServiceMix, thanks to a trackback from James McGovern's Enterprise Architecture blog in response to my earlier post about the ESB and ISB (Industry Service Bus) concepts.

So, an open source ESB development effort. No surprise there. So that gives you the plumbing of application integration / supply chain integration in an open source java-based package. Hell, combine that with Alfresco for the portal and document management functionality, JBoss jBPM for customisable workflow definitions, running on top of JBoss application server, JBoss portal, Apache, and Linux -- and you've got all of the technology bar the database for a fully functional enterprise application and content hub or for a fully functional industry hub handling collaborative working and supply chain integration.

The open source community continues to develop your core technology stack for you and you focus on maintaining your configuration and delivering services on top of the technology.

All you still need to invest in software-license-wise in this open source panacea is Oracle at the database - unless you think PostgreSQL is up to the job... I may get flamed by some Postgres fans for this but personally I would stick with Oracle for now...

Posted by ndoughty at 6:26 PM | Comments (1)

December 29, 2005

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

I have been at home in Texas for Christmas playing golf in Houston and hiking in the hill country west of Austin between copious amounts of Christmas grub, Mexican grub, and BBQ grub, all washed down by Texas beer. The weather here has been over 70 degrees every day (that’s about 21 degrees for you Celsius folks) and up to 80 (26) even on Monday. Next week I am off to New York for a week (where it is currently much much colder) before heading back to London and then to India ready for the new year in collaboration software!

Here’s hoping you and yours are having a wonderful festive season.

Posted by ndoughty at 8:04 PM | Comments (0)

December 13, 2005

Buzzsaw must be really making strides

Like Paul Wilkinson from BIW, I also received the RSS feed in Newsgator today with coverage of the "Virtual Builders Roundtable", an event in the US. It sounds like an interesting event, perhaps along the lines of the European CIO Workshop which I attended last month.

The event I attended was notable for the fair bit of US industry representation which made the trip over to participate in conversations with the UK and European players. I often worry that there ia a silo situation between solutions development in the UK/Europe and the US. I do have some direct experience here, having previously worked for Citadon, a U.S. collaboration company which came to Europe 5 years ago but is no longer truly active in the space (granted they do maintain one or two footholds such as at EC Harris).

Only in a very few truly globalised industries such as oil and gas or aerospace does there seem to me to be any real large-scale collaboration between industry in the US and the EU on solutions development. Notably, Citadon has since found its own success by moving away from the AEC industry and focusing instead on global EPC solutions delivery, including in particular Oil and Gas.

Even the standards bodies are often different and pointing in different directions. What are the common agenda items for Fiatech and the IAI ? I would love to hear from you if you can talk about the industry representation from the EU at this event and if so - what did you make of it?

And finally, I must concur with Paul W in expressing my astonishment at the claim by Buzzsaw to be the "second most widely-used ASP product after Salesforce.com"...

Erm, without even going into the vast number of other players active in the project collaboration space along with Buzzsaw (who do not have a significant presence in the EU) - how about the huge number of users worldwide on e-procurement systems like Ariba or Commerce One or Oracle? how about the endless number of e-government applications which are used by citizens of countries around the world to pay traffic tickets or apply for fishing licenses? how about Webex? PayPal? Ebay? I would also seriously doubt that salesforce.com had any valid claim on top spot for ASP usage - though admittedly I am less intimate with the CRM space than I am with the engineering space.

This claim has a lot of chutzpah certainly! :) Recently I was speaking with a Buzzsaw employee who told me another one - that Autodesk is the second oldest software company in existence after Microsoft. I belive he was let in on this tidbit in his interview. I can imagine a lot of industry veterans might get somewhat hot and bothered about that (and about the implication that MS is the oldest as well!)

Ah well - hear hear for American marketing! I suppose if they say it loudly and widely and say it enough times then perhaps it will come true of its own accord?

Posted by ndoughty at 7:24 PM | Comments (0)

More "Free" Collaboration (at least free for now)

Check out this new site called Writely. It allows you to do what is essentially browser-based word processing, using only in built browser functionality (supports IE and Firefox). No applets or activex required and it also supports real-time collaboration - a very open approach to collaboration in a Wiki style which works very well indeed. All based around AJAX technologies for the update and refresh functionality - in the same way that the latest version of the Asite software which we have been working on uses AJAX for the presentation - taking advantage of asynchronous update and refresh capabilities.. I collaborated on a test document with a couple of colleagues and published it here!

Since I mentioned the AJAX-in-collaboration developments which we have had in the pipeline in the last 6 months - I feel bound to link back to Paul Wilkinson's December 2 post on the topic.

No trumpet here! :)

Posted by ndoughty at 3:39 PM | Comments (0)

December 7, 2005

IBX signs IKEA purchasing deal

I just had this press release in my inbox. IBX has signed a global agreement to provide "on-demand" e-procurement and e-sourcing to IKEA.

IBX (stands for Integrated Business Exchange) is an electronic marketplace based in Stockholm, Sweden. IBX and Asite are the two European e-purchasing hubs in Europe built around the Commerce One marketplace technologies who survived the boom and bust cycle of the software market in the first half of this decade. We both continue to offer similar procurement, sourcing, and supply chain integration offerings in our respective markets. Ikea global purchasing is a serious win and I hope it is further evidence that the e-procurement space is picking up real steam after several years of slow growth.

Posted by ndoughty at 5:55 PM | Comments (0)

Glide Effortless

I just read an interesting review by Robin Good, on his blog of Online Collaboration Reviews about a new web-based collaboration tool called Glide Effortless. Robin was not too keen on the hype-to-functionality ratio of the tool, (meaning there was certainly a lot of hype compared to the resultant functionality) although he does rate it quite highly on interface goodies.

I don't know whether this is correct or not, as I have heard of neither the tool nor the company, Transmedia Corp., before today. Based on reading the review and scanning the Transmedia website I think the tool is meant to be targeted at consumers rather than at the business user, with a big focus on graphics, video, and music file sharing. It does not appear to be truly collaborative in the sense that I normally use the term - rather it is more based around personal publishing. The website talks of "multimedia blogging". Of course there is a lot of potential for overlap in these spaces as more and more content is shared via the web. I look forward to taking it for a bit of a spin. I'd be happy to hear about other's experiences with this tool.

Posted by ndoughty at 5:25 PM | Comments (2)

December 6, 2005

"Free" Collaboration

Here is a basic collaboration workspace which is actually free, in the economic sense, at least for 30 days! Forum One appears to be a US company in the D.C. area which targets the non-profit and government sectors.

Posted by ndoughty at 3:12 PM | Comments (0)

Alfresco 1.1 Released

Alfresco has announced the official release of the 1.1 version of their open source content management software packege. See blurb on serverside.com.

Posted by ndoughty at 3:04 PM | Comments (0)

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