Rational touts link to IBM portal pack

IBM Rational on Tuesday will further its integration with IBM Corp. brands through a new release of the IBM Rational Rapid Developer tool.

The company's IBM Rational Rapid Developer 2003 release 2 will enable development of portals for deployment on the IBM WebSphere Portal Server, according to IBM Rational officials. Also planned for the tool is an improved ability to integrate legacy applications with the Web through support of the Java Connector Architecture (JCA).

"We're providing a single tool for development of Web, wireless, and portal-based apps so that you don't need a (separate) tool to go off and do your portal development," said Patrick Luther, market manager for Rapid Developer at IBM Rational.

The combination of WebSphere and the Rational tool will enable users to more quickly design and deploy portlets, which provide personalization capabilities in portals, Rational said. Developers do not need to be experts in portal or Java programming to use the tool, Rational officials said.

JCA capabilities in Rapid Developer will enable developers to link legacy applications such as CICS or iSeries (formerly IBM AS/400) applications to the Web through a graphical, drag-and-drop interface, according to Rational officials.

The new version of Rational Rapid Developer carries a list price of US$6,595. The tool competes with offerings such as Compuware Corp. OptimalJ and BEA Systems Inc. WebLogic Workshop, Rational officials said.

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