BEA, TogetherSoft forge pact for Workshop plug-in
- By Peter Bochner
As a step in its plan to make J2EE accessible to a greater number of
developers, BEA Systems said on Tuesday that it is making a popular visual Java
modeling tool from TogetherSoft Corp. available as a plug-in for the WebLogic
Workshop development platform.
By integrating the ControlCenter Accelerator plug-in from TogetherSoft,
WebLogic Workshop developers can combine visual modeling and visual Web services
development in one environment. Previously, they could not do so because BEA
does not offer a Unified Modeling Language (UML) modeling tool. ''Now, developers
who like modeling tools can quickly and easily develop and deploy their
applications on WebLogic,'' said Erik Frieberg, direct of product marketing for
According to Frieberg, the marriage of WebLogic and ControlCenter makes the
model-build-deploy-test life cycle for applications extremely efficient. He
called the combination particularly compelling for ControlCenter developers,
''because they were previously limited to building EJB applications.''
This move follows TogetherSoft's recent announcement of a proposed
acquisition of WebGain Studio software from WebGain Inc. WebGain was backed
financially by BEA, and WebGain Studio software was typically shipped with
WebLogic app servers.
''With the WebLogic framework, they can build a whole new class of
applications with dramatically less time and effort,'' said Frieberg.
Developers can now build UML models for Web services in ControlCenter that
are accessed via the server-side control framework in WebLogic Workshop. The
resulting product allows customers to easily build and connect components, data
and application business logic in a visual environment, dramatically simplifying
The end result of this, said Freiberg, will be to make J2EE more accessible
to developers in the same way that Visual Basic accelerated the development of
applications for Microsoft Windows. According to Frieberg, J2EE is currently
accessible to only 10% to 15% of Java developers; the rest prefer not to program
to the comprehensiveness that J2EE provides. ''Our goal is to make J2EE
accessible to the vast majority of Java developers,'' he stated.
Accelerators are products that extend Together ControlCenter with other
software development tools and environments. Through year's end, the Accelerator
plug-in will be offered to joint BEA and ControlCenter users at no cost. Pricing
after that has not been determined, said Freiberg, but he said the usual cost of
the plug-in is $500.
According to Freiberg, this marks the first time a third-party software
vendor has developed a tool specifically for WebLogic Workshop. However, he
added that BEA will work with other Java tool vendors to make its WebLogic
Workshop framework accessible to as many developers as possible.
For more on BEA, read ''What's behind BEA's big bet on tools?'' by Jack Vaughan