Welcome!

Linux Containers Authors: Liz McMillan, JP Morgenthal, Elizabeth White, Derek Weeks, Lori MacVittie

Related Topics: Linux Containers

Linux Containers: Article

Following in Linux's Footsteps

How open source Java technology is shaking up the market

Is open source and the commoditization of certain technologies cannibalizing software license revenue? Possibly, but many argue that this market dynamic stimulates many vendors to accelerate innovation and to create new technologies and applications. And, while this market dynamic can be disruptive, it creates a roaring buyer's market for IT decision makers.

Nowhere is the case for this more apparent than in the middleware and application server sectors. Falling prices and a maturing market are also resulting in consolidation among the vendors. At the same time, open source alternatives, combined with tightening IT budgets, are changing the application server software market.

The Times - They Are A-Changin'

The Internet and open source make it possible to economically produce and distribute software. This is especially true with middleware, where stable standards are defined and open source is both a high-quality way of implementing these standards and an excellent way to achieve true definitions of the standards. Of course, the consumers of open source benefit from the low cost. Proprietary vendors are grappling with the commoditization of infrastructure software that today is firmly entrenched as a large, macro-economic force.

In the case of application server technology, some other key factors are accelerating its commoditization, including the Java 2, Enterprise Edition (J2EE) platform. This standard has been widely accepted by multiple application servers, which levels the playing field among vendors and makes portability of applications relatively straightforward.

In addition, Linux has played the role of a big brother, paving the way for young newcomers. Little brothers and sisters usually get to drive the car sooner or stay out later - the older sibling greases the wheel and makes life easier for them. So, the adoption of open source middleware is going much faster than Linux since the pathway has already been cleared and the open source OS has already been embraced by mainstream enterprises.

Where It's Successful

On the server side, combining open source with Java has pushed the limits of what modern middleware technology can do. JBoss, a Java-based, open source application server that has achieved 4 million downloads since 2001 so far, is a popular application server for companies that want a high-quality, cost-effective platform for developing scalable, secure Web applications.

This is also happening on the database front. According to an August 2003 brief by Forrester Research's Ted Schadler, with the open source database MySQL "....nipping at the heels of commercial databases, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, and Sybase will ramp up their already busy research teams."

Furthermore, SAP has recently handed its SAPDB database software to the open source development community and keeps 100 developers working on the software. Anyone can download the database from the SAP Web site, and the company provides support for its ERP software customers who are using the database.

In fact, MySQL AB now offers MaxDB. MaxDB is the result of an alliance between MySQL and SAP to jointly develop and market an enterprise open source database.

Free, high-quality products like this are changing the competitive landscape. Two years ago there were 30 application server vendors; today there are less than 10 proprietary vendors and only 4 have significant market share. At this rate, JBoss may become to application servers what Apache is to Web servers - a dominant open source platform in critical IT infrastructure and a deciding force in promoting open standards on the Internet.

What's a Commercial Vendor to Do?

Increased competition from both commercial and open source companies is pushing everyone to continue innovating and improving their technology. As a result, many vendors are now trying to differentiate themselves by adding extensions to their application servers. Although, according to Gartner's 2003 Enterprise Application Server Magic Quadrant, "The mainstream majority of enterprise projects will succeed equally well using an application server, embedded into a larger framework of tools, applications, or infrastructure technologies."

Other industry experts predict the emergence of specialized application servers dedicated to presenting data-base information to a variety of handheld devices, for example. Some are even rethinking the traditional practice of tying software licenses to mandatory service.

The Net-Net

The consumer, a discriminating IT buyer in a down market, is tired of multiple startups and even established vendors putting out the same technology and noise. As a result, the IT buyer is increasingly looking to open source products. At the same time, many proprietary vendors, losing market share due to the commoditization of such technologies are redirecting R&D into new Web services, integration, and portal technology, which ultimately may also benefit end users as well.

Like the Internet itself, the modern enterprise now increasingly relies on successful open source projects. Plus, the commoditization of operating systems, compilers, and servers is only the beginning. Many forms of infra-structure software can benefit from the open source model. Even non-proprietary business software likely to have a large user base may soon be ripe for commoditization too.

Ultimately, all this new thinking and ingenuity gives consumers increased choices, better products and services, and more cost-effective ways for building cutting-edge IT infrastructures and the next wave of distributed applications.

More Stories By Bob Bickel

As Executive Vice President at JBoss, Inc., Bob is responsible for strategy, corporate development and partnerships. Prior to founding Bickel Advisory Services, he was the General Manager of the HP Middleware Division. Before joining HP, Bickel was executive vice president of products for Bluestone Software Inc., acquired by HP in January 2001. Bickel was one of the original creators who brought Bluestone's application server technology to the marketplace and a reputation for product excellence. Before Bluestone, Bickel spent eleven years at Digital Equipment Corporation. Bickel holds a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Bucknell University and a master's degree in business administration in finance from Temple University. Bob also serves as an advisor or board member to Arjuna, Apax Partners, Baker Capital, Bristol Technologies, JBoss, Inc., Metaverse, ProductSoft, Sembleware, and Solstice Software.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
Internet of @ThingsExpo has announced today that Chris Matthieu has been named tech chair of Internet of @ThingsExpo 2017 New York The 7th Internet of @ThingsExpo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York. Chris Matthieu is the co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, a revolutionary real-time IoT platform recently acquired by Citrix. Octoblu connects things, systems, people and clouds to a global mesh network allowing users to automate and control design flo...
The WebRTC Summit New York, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, announces that its Call for Papers is now open. Topics include all aspects of improving IT delivery by eliminating waste through automated business models leveraging cloud technologies. WebRTC Summit is co-located with 20th International Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo. WebRTC is the future of browser-to-browser communications, and continues to make inroads into the traditional, difficult, plug-in web co...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their backend AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT - especially in the connected home and office. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Kocher, founder and managing director of Grey Heron, explained how Amazon is extending its reach to become a major force in IoT by building on its dominant cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strat...
Complete Internet of Things (IoT) embedded device security is not just about the device but involves the entire product’s identity, data and control integrity, and services traversing the cloud. A device can no longer be looked at as an island; it is a part of a system. In fact, given the cross-domain interactions enabled by IoT it could be a part of many systems. Also, depending on where the device is deployed, for example, in the office building versus a factory floor or oil field, security ha...
In addition to all the benefits, IoT is also bringing new kind of customer experience challenges - cars that unlock themselves, thermostats turning houses into saunas and baby video monitors broadcasting over the internet. This list can only increase because while IoT services should be intuitive and simple to use, the delivery ecosystem is a myriad of potential problems as IoT explodes complexity. So finding a performance issue is like finding the proverbial needle in the haystack.
The idea of comparing data in motion (at the sensor level) to data at rest (in a Big Data server warehouse) with predictive analytics in the cloud is very appealing to the industrial IoT sector. The problem Big Data vendors have, however, is access to that data in motion at the sensor location. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Scott Allen, CMO of FreeWave, discussed how as IoT is increasingly adopted by industrial markets, there is going to be an increased demand for sensor data from the outermos...
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, director/senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
SYS-CON Events has announced today that Roger Strukhoff has been named conference chair of Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo 2017 New York. The 20th Cloud Expo and 7th @ThingsExpo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "The Internet of Things brings trillions of dollars of opportunity to developers and enterprise IT, no matter how you measure it," stated Roger Strukhoff. "More importantly, it leverages the power of devices and the Internet to enable us all to im...
Whether your IoT service is connecting cars, homes, appliances, wearable, cameras or other devices, one question hangs in the balance – how do you actually make money from this service? The ability to turn your IoT service into profit requires the ability to create a monetization strategy that is flexible, scalable and working for you in real-time. It must be a transparent, smoothly implemented strategy that all stakeholders – from customers to the board – will be able to understand and comprehe...
"Once customers get a year into their IoT deployments, they start to realize that they may have been shortsighted in the ways they built out their deployment and the key thing I see a lot of people looking at is - how can I take equipment data, pull it back in an IoT solution and show it in a dashboard," stated Dave McCarthy, Director of Products at Bsquare Corporation, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
Everyone knows that truly innovative companies learn as they go along, pushing boundaries in response to market changes and demands. What's more of a mystery is how to balance innovation on a fresh platform built from scratch with the legacy tech stack, product suite and customers that continue to serve as the business' foundation. In his General Session at 19th Cloud Expo, Michael Chambliss, Head of Engineering at ReadyTalk, discussed why and how ReadyTalk diverted from healthy revenue and mor...
As data explodes in quantity, importance and from new sources, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and cloud environments grow with it. Managing data includes protecting it, indexing and classifying it for true, long-term management, compliance and E-Discovery. Commvault can ensure this with a single pane of glass solution – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enter...
Financial Technology has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, 2017, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech.
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
Unsecured IoT devices were used to launch crippling DDOS attacks in October 2016, targeting services such as Twitter, Spotify, and GitHub. Subsequent testimony to Congress about potential attacks on office buildings, schools, and hospitals raised the possibility for the IoT to harm and even kill people. What should be done? Does the government need to intervene? This panel at @ThingExpo New York brings together leading IoT and security experts to discuss this very serious topic.
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smar...