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Announcements this week from Sweden’s Telelogic
and Alfresco Software
in San Francisco address both ends of the process that brings the next
generation of Web-based applications to reality.

Telelogic announced Nov. 27 its release of Version 3.0 of
its Tau model-driven design tool
. I had a chance to review the
details of the new version in advance of that announcement, and I was
struck by the way that the demands of mainstream enterprise application
development have caught up with the things that Tau was designed to do.

The target market for Tau has traditionally been among builders of
complex, distributed, heterogeneous real-time systems—think
“intelligent battlefield” or “pay-at-the-pump retail”—rather than
the comparatively uninteresting world of vanilla terminals whose
response times could vary up to several seconds before an application
would be said to be broken. The world of Web services is now a highly
message-driven environment in which different
types of device
use a complex mesh of communication channels to provide
prompt access
to anything from financial market transactions to
traffic alerts and updated driving instructions.

The abstraction of
model-driven development, combined with Tau 3.0’s enhancements aimed at
accelerating the coding of Web services interactions, represents a
timely aid to the hottest spot in development today—or at least to
the developer topic that’s tied with that of addressing
Vista compatibility issues
, but that’s
another matter
for another time.

Later this week, we’ll see another announcement from Alfresco
Software and several partner companies concerning the joint development
of an open-source benchmark for JSR-170
content repository
performance. Getting away from
application-specific file systems to more comprehensive, far more
robust content management foundations has long been a goal that I’ve
wanted to see the industry pursue: An open-source benchmark, whose
details we’ll see soon, offers us a common and transparent means of
characterizing the capability and especially the scalability of
alternative approaches to that end.

From the design work that precedes development and deployment, to the reliable capture and efficient usability of the content that new applications may consume, deliver or produce, announcements like these continue to strengthen the fabric of the online enterprise.

Tell me what you see as the fraying ends of the application
development process at
peter_coffee@ziffdavis.com.

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