IBM, Akamai ship second grid package

Cambridge, Mass.-based Akamai Technologies Inc.  and IBM have started shipping the fruits of a partnership that called for the building of software to make it easier to deploy J2EE Web apps built on IBM's WebSphere across Akamai's global computing platform.

Akamai's global network consists of 14,000 servers distributed across the globe in 2,400 locations, explained Kieran Taylor, the firm's director of product management. Taylor claims the network is ''the largest on-demand computing grid in terms of sheer breadth, scale and processing power.''

Under an earlier pact, IBM and Akamai brought out a joint solution in May called Akamai EdgeComputing, powered by WebSphere, that is said to allow WebSphere customers to use the Akamai global network to more easily access and process Web applications.

This month's move builds on the first agreement and enables the jointly developed utility-like computing service to make effective use of WebSphere Studio development tools, officials said. It does so by creating a single environment for developers and application architects to deploy J2EE applications.

The announcement provides customers with a seamless way to publish applications to the Akamai network, said Taylor. ''This is not a new programming model; it's simply a new deployment model. Instead of having to guess-timate, enterprises can now deploy to the Akamai network and pay only for the processing they require.''

What this adds to the developer environment, added Jay Parikh, director of engineering at Akamai, is validation functionality to code. ''It allows you to walk through a three- to four-page wizard and you can deploy this application into the Akamai network automatically from a window,'' he said.

The combined technology is considered to be on-demand in that developers can, from this environment, deploy an application instantaneously onto the Akamai network without provisioning any new hardware or software, Taylor noted. ''We're able to provide capacity on demand to run our customers' applications through 14,000 servers.''

About the Author

Lana Gates is a freelance writer based in Mesa, Arizona. She can be reached via e-mail at


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