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Software Configuration Management

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The hardest single part of building a software system is deciding precisely what to build. No other part of the conceptual work is so difficult as establishing the detailed technical requirements…Therefore the most important function that software builders do for their clients is the iterative extraction and refinement of the product requirements." - Fred Brooks in No Silver Bullet - Essence and Accident in Software Engineering Experienced Java developers recognize that capturing and refining the requirements is one of the most important, yet difficult, parts of building a software system. An iterative software development process that incorporates the right tools can facilitate effective requirements management. Product Background MKS added requirements management to their software configuration management (SCM) product offerings with the recent release of MKS... (more)

PowerBuilder Top Feature Picks

PBDJ - PowerBuilder Journal PowerBuilder 11.5 was released in the third quarter of 2008 and by early 2009 had made its way into many IT development shops. The draw is a significant set of enhancements that move the development experience closer to the nirvana anticipated in the PowerBuilder 12.0 release. PB 12.0 will complete Sybase's initial four-phase long range plan for PowerBuilder that was laid out in late 2003 (see Figure 1). In the meantime, PB 11.5 raises the bar in major areas such as application functionality, database connectivity, newer MS-Windows operating system compliance, more .NET compatibility, and Federal Desktop Core Configuration compliance. Once again I was able to join the PowerBuilder beta program for version 11.5, which let me continue my unbroken participation in every PowerBuilder release since version 0.8. The nice thing about the beta pro... (more)

The IBM Rational Approach to SOA and Web Services

The need to respond to changing business demands with flexible IT solutions has led many businesses to service oriented architectures (SOAs). An SOA is an IT framework that combines individual business functions and processes, called services, to implement sophisticated business applications and processes. SOA is an approach to IT that considers business processes as reusable components or "services" that are independent of the applications and computing platforms on which they run. SOA solutions are designed as assemblies of services in which the description of the assembly is a managed, first-class aspect of the system, and hence amenable to analysis, change, and evolution. A system is then viewed as a choreographed set of service interactions, so enterprise solutions appear as federations of services connected via well-specified contracts that define their servi... (more)

Best Practices in WebSphere Application Packaging and Deployment

Most of the time spent in an application development project is in developing and testing the application. Less time is actually spent designing and creating a repeatable and reproducible packaging and deployment model. A well-designed "build, package, and deploy" model has numerous benefits, including improved developer productivity, reduced turnaround time for builds and code fixes, better consistency in application code, and reinforcement of development policies. In this article I present the best practices to use in packaging and deploying WebSphere applications. The best practices presented here have been applied to small and large enterprise projects with equal success. Although the focus of this article is WebSphere Application Server 3.5, it can be adopted to WebSphere 4.0 as well. I have created a fictitious application called PetStore to illustrate these ... (more)

Direction for Software Developers in the Cloud

The last fifty years has seen the advent and rise of the Information Age -- a period marked by the ability to integrate data management and transactional data processing into many aspects of society. During this time, we have developed the means and tools to transform and move data about in quantities undreamt of during the Industrial Age.  As information technology (IT) has evolved and matured over these years by the efforts of untold numbers of programmers, engineers and scientists around the world, its range of effect has increased from controlling data formats and performing simple branching decisions to complex data analysis, process scheduling, provisioning systems management, sophisticated interface management, network control and more. In this first decade of the twenty-first century, IT sophistication has reached a tipping point. I came across an interesting ... (more)

The Rise of Functional Java Programming

Java applications have become steadily harder to understand and maintain in recent years. Object-oriented programming has proven an effective way to develop enterprise applications, but several recent trends are causing a sharp increase in code complexity. One is the increasingly common use of the Factory design pattern, abstracting away the object creation process (e.g., the creation of servlet objects by application servers, the use of Spring as a general-purpose object factory, the use of JNDI, etc.) Another is the increased use of the JavaBean pattern with reflection and annotations (e.g., for object serialization and persistence). The result is that objects have more mutable state than ever, and the code causing changes to that state is increasingly decentralized. Programs are becoming easier to write, but harder to debug as complexity spirals out of control. F... (more)

IBM & Cloud Computing: Getting Ready for the Zettabyte Age

Well IBM has gone and done it, they've announced a cloud offering yet again. Actually what's interesting about this go, is not that they're getting into the cloud business (again) but instead this time they're serious about it. And like it or not, they're approach actually does kind of make sense for, assuming you're within their target demographic (the large enterprise looking to save a few bucks). My summary of the "Big Blue Cloud" is as follows: It's not what you can do for the cloud, but what the cloud can do for you. Or simply, it's about the application, duh? In a statement earlier today in the New York Times, IBM CEO Sam Palmisano said, “The information technology infrastructure is under stress --- and the data flood is just accelerating.” Palmisano isn't alone in this thinking, earlier this week Cisco Systems, the mobile networking giant, released a report sug... (more)

AccuRev Integrates with NetBeans IDE 3.6 Platform

AccuRev, Inc. is integrating AccuRev with NetBeans Integrated Development Environment (IDE) 3.6. AccuRev demonstrated this NetBeans integration at NetBeans Software Day, a companion event to the 2004 JavaOne Conference, on Tuesday, June 29. is the home of the NetBeans open source community and code base. The award-winning NetBeans IDE provides a pure Java technology development environment for Windows, Linux, the Solaris Operating System or Mac OS X. NetBeans IDE 3.6, a major revision to the open source platform, is intended to enable applications development on systems ranging from mobile devices to multi-tier enterprise systems. AccuRev is the only software configuration management system to offer TimeSafe architecture, which effortlessly allows groups of developers to implement unlimited hierarchies of parallel development streams. AccuRev's new arc... (more)

Adobe Flash Media Server on iPhone

Modulation Index, LLC announced  that the Tuner2 Hi-Fi Radio app for Apple iPhone is the first ever iPhone application to natively support the true RTMP protocol for streaming audio via Adobe Flash Media Server. Radio stations can now use a single standard streaming format to serve MPEG-4 HE AAC v2 audio to listeners on Windows, Mac, and Apple iPhone. In addition, Modulation Index announced that this functionality is also available immediately to all station customers taking delivery of customized versions of its iPhone radio app. The Tuner2 Hi-Fi Radio app for Apple iPhone is a custom version of the Modulation Index iPhone radio app. By supporting MPEG-4 HE AAC v2 audio delivered over Adobe Flash Media server protocol, the Tuner2 Hi-Fi Radio app enables a listening experience with more stability and higher audio quality than the more typical MP3 or HE AAC v1 over ... (more)

AccuRev 4.0 Facilitates Effective Team Software Development

Sharp tools make software development quicker and more productive. They automate manual tasks to speed development. They provide useful information intuitively to enhance productivity. Eclipse, the powerful and well-designed IDE, is such a tool. Few Java developers would want to return to a text editor, command-line compiler, and standalone debugger after experiencing the power of this integrated development environment. In the same way that an intuitive and elegant IDE aids modern software development, a cutting-edge yet robust software configuration management (SCM) tool enables successful team software development. AccuRev 4.0 is the latest release of the innovative SCM tool that fosters effective team software development. AccuRev's strength lies in its straightforward client/server architecture, transaction-based and append-only data repository, and stream-bas... (more)

IBM Readies Cloud for Business

IBM (NYSE: IBM) introduced the industry's first set of commercial "cloud" services and integrated products for the enterprise. This will give clients a reliable way to standardize IT functions that are rapidly becoming too costly or difficult to use. Based on nearly two years of research and hundreds of client engagements, the IBM Smart Business cloud portfolio is meant to help clients turn complex business processes into simple services. To accomplish this, Smart Business brings sophisticated automation technology and self-service to specific digital tasks as diverse as software development and testing; desktop and device management; and collaboration. From utility grids to roadways, water systems and financial instruments, the world's physical infrastructure is rapidly becoming more instrumented and IT-enabled, and corporate data centers will have to deal with a ne... (more)