2005 Java Pro Editors' Choice Awards

See what products won in development, architecture, and platform categories.

<>When tasked with the decision to choose products for our 2005 Java Pro Editors' Choice Awards, the editorial staff of Java Pro magazine, including selected authors and columnists, were confronted with a Java marketplace offering a cornucopia of tools, IDEs, platforms, suites, and comprehensive integrated solutions specifically designed to work with the complexities of enterprise-scale processes. And then, of course, there were the myriad products that support more granular aspects of the application lifecycle, such as reporting and testing tools, graphics tools, JVMs, and optimizers, among others.

Recognizing our role in covering the industry objectively to best serve the readership, and realizing that scrutinizing products across a wide array of software categories can translate into quite a bit of overlap, we decided that product selection for specific functionality is best left to the individuals who use the products on a daily basis—the readers for our Readers' Choice Awards. For the Editors' Choice Awards we decided to acknowledge broader, comprehensive products that correspond with the areas we use to encapsulate the breadth of the industry in our magazine's coverage. We chose best overall products for development, architecture, and platform, and then we chose a fourth product that we felt best reflected innovation across the enterprise stack, because leveraging tools for developing mission-critical, enterprise-scale applications is a strong direction for the industry.

The selection process was relatively simple. We each created our own short list of product offerings from among vendors whom we identified as being perennial industry leaders, and then tallied the votes to determine the winners. We selected products based on fairly simple criteria: products that we felt have provided noteworthy benefits to Java professionals, exhibited market leadership, and demonstrated the innovation to set them apart from competitors. The editors of Java Pro give you their winners for 2005.

Best Overall Development Product: Eclipse SDK
The Eclipse platform continues to demonstrate widespread acceptance for building IDEs that can be applied to developing embedded Java programs, Web sites, and other diverse applications. It delivers mechanisms exposed through APIs, classes, and methods; useful frameworks; and the essential rules that allow providers to build seamlessly integrated tools. For these reasons, its phenomenal growth, and the many benefits developers derive from this open source platform, Java Pro editors selected the Eclipse SDK as their choice for best overall development product.

Best Overall Architecture Product: BEA WebLogic Workshop
Organizations are increasingly looking to take business processes to the next level by migrating to SOAs and building enterprise-scale applications, which can be a complex undertaking. BEA's WebLogic Workshop offers a solution for reducing the complexity of SOA migration in addition to the overall lifetime costs of IT infrastructures. Developers and architects can use its Java Controls feature to connect to and use IT assets, while hiding the complexity inherent in the J2EE platform when making such connections. Because WebLogic Workshop provides for customizing controls and adding to them the business logic necessary for reusable, composite components, Java Pro editors selected it as their choice for best overall product for architecture support.

Best Overall Integration Product for the Platform: SAP NetWeaver
When developing or considering a business strategy for optimizing both the supply side and the demand side of a business, organizations require a comprehensive integration and application platform capable of enabling and managing change. SAP NetWeaver offers a platform that can work with existing IT infrastructures to allow IT professionals to design, build, and execute business strategies and processes. With its enhanced Java development infrastructure and J2EE support, SAP NetWeaver provides a standards-based middleware solution for driving innovation and combining existing systems, making it the Java Pro editors' choice for best overall integration product for platform environments.

Best Product Exhibiting Innovation in the Enterprise Stack: IBM WebSphere
Organizations that are looking for a comprehensive set of software tools that support the entire application development lifecycle can meet that requirement with the IBM WebSphere platform. WebSphere comprises a vast collection of integration and application infrastructure software that enables architects and developers to design, build, test, deploy, and manage enterprise-scale applications for traditional mainframe, Java, or composite applications. The WebSphere platform covers all aspects of the J2EE application lifecycle, from modeling and design through development, testing, deployment, and management, and because there is arguably no broader or deeper stack for managing the application lifecycle and its associated processes, Java Pro editors selected it for best product exhibiting innovation in the enterprise stack.