Briefs: Informix Personalizes Wireless Market

SAN FRANCISCO (05/08/2000) - Informix Corp. expanded its i.Sell offerings by adding an i.Sell WAP module for Sun Microsystem Inc.'s Solaris operating environment. With the i.Sell WAP product, which makes use of the Wireless Applications Protocol (WAP), customers can use mobile devices for Internet activities such as viewing news or market quotes, buying products, and tracking orders.

The i.Sell offering, a Java-based solution, collects and monitors customer habits so that businesses can offer personalized services. It relies on the i.Sell Personalizer to supply information about the user and the user's mobile device (such as the bandwidth of mobile networks, display abilities, and user preferences). Since the application is distributed on the Informix Internet Foundation.2000, businesses can also incorporate geographic positioning from the mobile network into the i.Sell WAP system, which presents further customizing opportunities. Tek-Tools presents visual environment for JavaBeansTek-Tools has released JForge Ultra 3.0, a visual environment for creating JavaBean-based applications. JForge Ultra offers the capabilities of standard GUI builders plus more dynamic innovations, such as support for nonvisual and visual beans as well as event-handling capabilities.

Version 3.0 is compatible with Sun's JDK 1.2, so developers can categorize nonvisual and visual beans. A new Quick Helper feature automatically skips to the bean properties that are changed most frequently. JForge Ultra 3.0 also offers a code-generation filter and a Multiple Document Interface (MDI).

JForge Ultra 3.0, which writes pure Java code for any platform, is priced at $199 for a single developer license. Users can also download a free 30-day trial version. WebMethods delivers B2B integration softwareWebMethods Inc. has released webMethods B2B for RosettaNet, an out-of-box solution that integrates with many legacy, backend, and ERP (enterprise resource planning) systems while implementing realtime business-to-business e-commerce across a supply chain. RosettaNet is an industry standards consortium that develops B2B interface processes. webMethods B2B for RosettaNet can be used to connect information systems, data, and collaborative processes in realtime, while ensuring the secure, bidirectional transfer of information between applications in the supply chain.

WebMethods B2B for RosettaNet:

Customizes development efforts with support for RosettaNet Partner Interface Processes (PIPs), data dictionaries, the RosettaNet Implementation Framework, and DUNS, UNSPSC, and GTIN codes Supports standard integration modules and adapters for backend ERP applications, including those from Oracle Corp., Baan Co. NV, SAP AG, and PeopleSoft Inc.

Supports most B2B industry standards, including cXML, XML, xCBL, SML, FpML, OAG, OBI, and EDI Contains a Trading Partner Manager module to gather trading-partner rules across the supply chain, and the Conversation Manager module to guarantee compliance with RosettaNet standards and the integrity of transactionswebMethods B2B for RosettaNet is available on all Java-compatible platforms, including Solaris, HP-UX, Compaq Computer Corp.'s Unix, Linux, IBM Corp.'s AIX, AS/400, and Microsoft Corp.'s Windows NT/2000. Digi-Net expands DigiChat's capabilitiesDigi-Net Technologies has upgraded its DigiChat Java-based chat server to version 2.0. The updated version allows ISPs to implement simultaneous chat rooms with many concurrent users, while its Java architecture allows installation on any platform. The DigiChat applet operates on Java-enabled browsers and does not require downloading software or installing special plug-ins.

Version 2.0 was enhanced with the DC Commander application, which increases site awareness, marketing abilities, and administrative controls. In addition, the new version can:

- Send live broadcast messages to all or selected chat room members - Support third-party banners - Create private chat rooms if users wish - Provide private or OEM branding - Show the number of people discussing specific topics CodeWarrior adds PersonalJava supportMetrowerks Corp. has released CodeWarrior, PersonalJava Platform Edition, version 1.0. The offering allows developers to build applications for consumer devices -- such as set-top boxes, Internet screen phones, and Internet appliances -- that support the PersonalJava platform and API. Sun's PersonalJava application environment is part of J2ME. By implementing the CodeWarrior IDE, developers can add content to networked consumer tools that carry out class libraries from a wireless network or LAN and a PersonalJava virtual machine.

The CodeWarrior PersonalJava Edition features:

- Rapid application development for the Abstract Windowing Toolkit graphical user interface library - A Java compiler - JavaCheck, which confirms an application's API needs with the PersonalJava API - Project Template, which jump-starts a PersonalJava development project - Developers can also review and correct PersonalJava code operating on the PersonalJava emulation environment on a single host machine. When the application operates in the emulation environment, all devices operate in certified PersonalJava environments.

CodeWarrior, PersonalJava Platform Edition, version 1.0 is available for $549. Oracle readies Internet File System for shipmentOracle Corp. expects to ship its Internet File System (iFS) technology -- which saves and organizes up to 150 file types, including video, audio, and Microsoft Excel/Word documents -- in May. The product was originally scheduled to ship in September 1999.

The iFS is considered an important component of Oracle's 8i database application. It basically incorporates a file system into the 8i database, instead of into an operating system. Industry analysts note that this may result in faster searches and that users will be able to access content via standard Web browsers. However, they also indicate that placing the file system in the database will require upgrading even high-end servers with additional processors because of the database's processing demands.

The iFS supports both XML and Java. Oracle software developers can download a version of iFS through the Oracle developer Website. Inter-Tel phones home with ClearConnectInter-Tel unveiled its ClearConnect offering, a Java-based telephone for PC-to-PC and PC-to-phone Internet Protocol (IP) telephony. ClearConnect installs on a personal computer and relies on that system's speakers, sound card, and microphone for calls. The system connects to local ISPs and then links users to a phone number via an Inter-Tel InterPrise voice and data router.

Phone calls can be completed through IP-based networks because ClearConnect translates voice calls to data packets for delivery. Inter-Tel uses compression algorithms and techniques such as jitter buffer, packet fragmentation, and echo cancellation to decrease the delay or loss of voice packets.

Limited availability of ClearConnect is expected in early May. Motorola secures data with Flexgate smart cardMotorola Inc. has developed Flexgate, an Internet security offering that is compatible with its 32-bit M-Smart Jupiter multiapplication smart card platform. Flexgate stores private keys and digital certificates on a Java Card, rather than using PC-based cryptographic techniques or keys.

Flexgate offers:

- SSL 3.0 client authentication protocol to access secure Websites - S/MIME protocol to sign and decrypt email messages - Certificate/private key pairs stored on the Security Token - The Flexgate package contains a smart card reader, a PC resident software offering (Middleware), and an M-Smart Jupiter smart card with the Flexkey Java applet. Gecko Software delivers realtime service managementGecko Software Ltd. has launched a Java-based service level management (SLM) system, dubbed e-ccord. The SLM allows service providers to execute service level agreements and to evaluate service quality in realtime. The e-ccord was designed with LDAP services for issuing managed object information, a CIM representation of management objects, and CORBA for database/event access in distributed environments.

The e-ccord architecture coordinates service level agreements with a vendor-independent system. It obtains information from current element management systems such as application, network, and system frameworks. A service modeling system delivers a realtime view of the service. Gecko's e-ccord offers customers Web-based reports and perspectives that can also be viewed in realtime. This allows customers and service providers to track and actively supervise services. Customers can verify that service performance levels are being met, and service providers can be notified if performance violations occur.

Entry-level e-ccord systems are priced at $50,000. The Gecko e-ccord SLM system is available for HP OpenView. Market warms to J2EE Companies are slowly beginning to support Sun's J2EE software. Contractual disagreements resulted in there being only five J2EE partners at the December 1999 release, but Sun has just added eight more partners. Many companies were initially put off by Sun's demands for royalty payments; they also disliked its requirement that licensees implement all the new server technologies included in J2EE. Sun has since structured more flexible licensing agreements. It still faces challenges, however: out of the 60 software organizations using Java, only 13 companies have agreed to upgrade to J2EE. IBM offers JTOpen for downloadIBM Corp.'s JTOpen is now available as a free download. JTOpen is an open source version of IBM's AS/400 Toolbox for Java. The application is a collection of Java classes that support Internet programming and client/server models for an AS/400 server. Java servlets, applets, and applications use the Java classes to obtain AS/400 resources and data. Some of the access classes within JTOpen are: integrated file system, commands, program calls, database (JDBC and record-level access), user spaces, data queues, jobs and job logs, and data areas.

Download JTOpen:

Clever Content protects Toonscape

Toonscape selected Alchemedia's Clever Content software to protect the digital images displayed on its Website. Toonscape is an online meeting place for animators, comic artists, and illustrators, and Clever Content will help guarantee the copyright safety of their images.

The Clever Content platform contains three components:

Clever Content Manager: a Java-based remote management tool for choosing which images will be protected Clever Content Viewer: a free plug-in that supports Windows and Mac browsers a free Web service that lets an artist organize an online portfolio of 10 images -- which can't be copied, screen-captured, or printed About the author Julie Salzmann is a freelance writer based in Silicon Valley, Calif. Currently focusing on technical issues, she has written abstracts of online databases and indexed ZDNet's TipZone database. Her previous work spans a variety of disciplines, including education: she was the news editor for and she coauthored How to Choose a Public School in San Francisco.

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