BEA Product Chief Highlights Future WebLogic Plans

Integration of Liquid Data in Workshop tool planned for 2003

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In a keynote address Tuesday at eWorld here, BEA Systems' product chief outlined future plans for the BEA WebLogic product line, including the delivery of Liquid Data in WebLogic Workshop.

BEA Vice President of Products Olivier Helleboid said the company would add its Liquid Data integration software to BEA's Workshop tool later this year.

Liquid Data, which shipped for the first time in November, allows for realtime aggregation of both structured and unstructured data from any source in the enterprise, BEA said. Workshop is a unified suite of tools simplifying application development and integration.

WebLogic Workshop 8.1, unveiled this week, unifies development on all the products in BEA's WebLogic Enterprise Platform, including WebLogic Portal, WebLogic Server, WebLogic Integration and WebLogic Workshop.

Helleboid also outlined four key product areas on which BEA is focused for the next release of its software stack. "There is life after 8.1," he said, referring to the release BEA unveiled just this week.

In the next release, BEA will focus on delivering application management, including automating change to applications across an infrastructure, Helleboid said.

BEA also will add more security functions to future releases, building on the introduction of a security framework in WebLogic Server 7.0, which shipped last year, he said.

Helleboid added that BEA extended that security framework, which provides easy links to third-party security products, in WebLogic Enterprise Platform 8.1 by making it available not only to the application server, but to all the products in the platform.

In addition, Helleboid said BEA would continue to focus on providing development tools aimed at enabling application developers to build J2EE-based business solutions and Web services using BEA's software.

"We will continue to add simple tools for developers to do business applications," Helleboid said. "We will move up the paradigm closer and closer to the business users."

Finally, Helleboid said BEA would continue to improve the basics of its application development platform, such as scalability, performance and reliability.

Helleboid is a relative newcomer to BEA, joining last fall from Rainfinity. Previously, he spent 18 years at Hewlett-Packard, his last four running its OpenView software business.

Following Helleboid's keynote, John Davies, vice president of solutions marketing at Intel, highlighted the chip maker's plans to provide technology making wireless connectivity standard in all computing devices.

"We are seeing the convergence of computing and communications," Davies said. "In the future, we see all computing devices communicating and all communication devices needing more and more computing power."

Davies also praised Intel's alliance with BEA, unveiled in July 2001, as a "natural partnership" that works well because the two companies do not compete on any levels.

In addition, Davies outlined how Intel, HP and BEA are working in three technology centers around the world--in Cupertino, Calif.; Grenoble, France; and Beijing--to optimize performance of BEA WebLogic on HP servers running Intel Itanium chips.

Intel and Hewlett-Packard were the two main sponsors of the conference this year. HP Chairman and CEO Carly Fiorina addressed eWorld attendees yesterday.

BEA's partnerships with HP and Intel are part of the San Jose, Calif.-based company's strategy to expand the deployment of WebLogic to the volume server market.

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