Adesso Touts Sync Service

The Boston-based company hopes to rally VARs, solution providers and hobbyists to use its replication and synchronization technology as a service to efficiently replicate all file types—along with associated schema, design and access rights—to "edge" devices using its own servers.The goal is to push more useable content and applications—vs. just data—out to user devices, where it will be accessible even when Web connectivity cannot be assumed. Then the technology promises to efficiently replicate/sync changes back to the mothership when connection is made.

"[Adesso] only replicates changes, and the technology distributes the code and the database at the same time," said Adesso Chairman and CEO John Landry, a former Lotus Development and IBM executive.

Meta-data travels with the application to recipients, but developers can control who gets access to that.

Don Dodge, director of business development for Microsoft's Emerging Business Team, has characterized Adesso's technology as "WinFS today."

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Microsoft's WinFS file system, which would store all data types, has long been promised but has yet to be delivered. Last week Microsoft said beta two of WinFS will be out this fall.

Adesso offers a free tool and service for hobbyists to save and distribute files—video, photos, music and text—to friends and family.

The hope is that some of the hobbyists might blossom into business developers.

If they do, the company will offer the "AppsNow" market to host the applications and split proceeds with the business developers.

The cut has not yet been decided. AppsNow is analogous to's AppExchange.

Commercial users of that service would be charged $19 to $29 per month.

"This is the first synchronization service vs. software-as-a-service," Landry said. "They build applications that use our tool not only for commercial applications but for noncommercial or social applications. Those [noncommercial] services would be free up to a limit of bandwidth and storage."

Developers also can continue to use the languages and software tools of choice, Adesso said.

"It's a plug-in architecture. You can work in .Net 2.0 or HTML," said Phil Stanhope, Adesso's vice president of technology and alliances.

Sam Ganga, CEO of Leverent, a Chicago-based integrator, has used Adesso's existing version for more than a year. One of its applications tracks cattle for mad-cow inspection. Inspection applications, where field representatives cannot rely on good connectivity, are a green field for Adesso.

"They have a two-prong strategy and we're in both," Ganga said. "One is for enterprise customers, where partners like ourselves would build applications that could be sold back lock-stock-and-barrel to the customer, whether subscription- or host-based or not. For nonenterprises, there's [the] ActNow subscription host model that can be for consumers or businesses. You could set up an inspection system and be paid per use."

The executives were at Microsoft Tech Ed 2006 last week in Boston, strutting their stuff for the developer and IT attendees.

Adesso is coming back around to partners after drifting into an enterprise-sales model, Landry said.