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Is IBM Slowly and Surely Becoming Microsoft Two? Will we see IBM buy Sun next? wonders Ajit Sagar
Is IBM Slowly and Surely Becoming Microsoft Two? Will we see IBM buy Sun next? wonders Ajit Sagar

Speaking to industry analysts and the world's leading technology publications, including Java Developer's Journal, IBM elaborated on the details and intentions behind its biggest announcement since its purchase of Lotus Development Corporation in June 1995, namely its upcoming acquisition of Rational Software for a staggering sum in excess of $2 billion. J2EE Editor Ajit Sagar asked the senior vice president of IBM's Global Software Business, Steve Mills, whether the purchase would in any way diminish IBM's commitment to Java. Since Rational's heritage is cross-platform, Sagar quizzed Mills as to whether the perception of IBM as one of the de facto champions of Java infrastructures would change in any way. "IBM has always been cross-platform," Mills replied. "All our software runs on Windows. All of our infrastructure runs on Windows, and we support open source infrastructures like Eclipse. The Java community will continue to get that support and enhancements." Sagar asked Mills if the move heralds a closer integration with IBM's infrastructures such as WebSphere and other middleware frameworks. "Yes, we see a stronger integration with the WebSphere suite and other infrastructures," Mills said. "And this is primarily in the Java middleware space," he added, "as IBM has always been a big player there." Sagar himself views the Rational acquisition, which is still of course subject to formal approval by Rational's shareholders, as "a great move" for IBM and for the Java community. "There will be more support in terms of integrated offerings both in design and infrastructure products," he explains. "I can see more comprehensive design environments in IBM?s products as well as in open source Java products coming out of this acquisition." Is there a "but"? There's always a but. "All this comes at a cost," says Sagar. "Rational has been the Microsoft of the design and development process world, while IBM has been seen as a champion for things 'not-Microsoft,' meaning effectively, Java- or IBM-specific. The combination gets them to a much more 'single source for all technologies' stance."

Which begs a startling question: "Will we see IBM buy Sun next?" wonders Ajit Sagar. "Are we seeing another Microsoft in the making?"

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JDJ News Desk monitors the world of Java to present IT professionals with updates on technology advances, business trends, new products and standards in the Java and i-technology space.

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Reader Feedback: Page 1 of 1

Rational's strength was it's impartial approach to software development. Now that "the anchor" has bought them, I am sure the process will not be so impartial anymore.

Joe




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