Apache Group is taking on some awfully nice chunks of software for the Open Source community – and more are becoming Java related signifying the increasingly important position Java has in development. For example, early in the summer, BEA turned over the Weblogic Workshop runtime engine to Apache as the Beehive project. This considerably simplifies the development of BEA Workshop projects. BEA Workshop started the trend toward radical simplification of Java development tools now being picked up by IBM with Eclipse, Sun with NetBeans and Java Studio Creator plus Oracle with a revamped Jdeveloper. The attraction of BEA Workshop is that it makes building JSP and J2EE EJB a lot easier both in the design/development phase and on the deployment side.

More recently Apache landed the IBM/Informix Java database Cloudscape. Cloudscape is attractive because it takes users beyond the Sleepycat or Pointbase solutions to a more complete SQL and enterprise level database with Cloudscape. Now tossing a database out into the OpenSource community is not always successful as with PostGreSQL and the CAs opensourcing of the Ingres basic engine (still in process but raising questions). It will be interesting to see if Cloudscape has the “interested 3rd parties” claimed by IBM – just looking for a robust, Open Source Java database.