The End Is Near …

The End Is Near … I have signs and proofs for all you Disbelievers:

Borland exits from the IDE marketplace giving up on $60-120 million of potential business value.
IBM gives away free DB2 Express loaded with features and runtime besting/matching Oracle, Microsoft, MySQL etc.
Open Source is yet again leading innovation, this time in AJAX development frameworks
Writing in-house software is dead, plugged, hung and quartered – even VARs SMB outsourcing goes to Managed Service Providing
SOA and Enterprise Software Integration mean reuse from application through backend subsystem down to GUI components

And I could easily pepper this page with more articles which would lend greater substance to what Microsoft VP David Vaskevich said about 10 years ago at a PDC-Professional Developers Conference – the major last frontier of compuing is being settled – n-tier, heterogeneous, distributed processing. Yes, David did then allow for more than the mono-culture that Redmond still is assiduously cultivating with its bulwark of tightly coupled, “runs-best-in-Windows” applications, bloated server utilities and now belated Web Service offerings.

And we are seeing the fruits of settling on how to do n-tier heterogeneous distributed processing(well not quite as noted here). Software development is now becoming customization, personalization, and interfacing/gluing together either Enterprise Application Suites or SaaS -Software as a Service. And for installing and tweaking the software plumbing, organizations have a diverse set of choices from Offshore, Onshore and Backshore agents, project management, and/or Service Provision teams.

One thing seen to be dwindling rapidly is in-house development of code – it is just too complicated at all the layers:
GUI and presentation layer has yet to master the 6As especially any device, anywhere, offline or online
Object and data persistence layer is also up for grabs among a whole set of technologies and frameworks geared for both short and fast transaction processing but also long messging/reconciliation based long transactions;
Messaging and collaboration middlware layer is also seeing tumultuous upheaval as SOA/ESB stakes a claim in a space traditionally served by highly tuned specialty systems (think CORBA, EDI/RPC, Messaging/Workflow, etc).
So right on time to the Gartner/Forrester/Analyst Siren Call for Consolidation Premature or Not, the software oligarchs recognizing the shrinking frontier and the threat of Open Source Sooners have started to offer bigger “land claim” chunks of free sofware and services.

The result is that for pure play and start-up software vendors the End is Near. Companies not only have to have the right technology for the right market but also with an airtight business model that will be able to withstand the revenue pounding that will come of software oligarchs free give-aways/bundles and Open Sourcers giving away for free substantial chunks of Your Software. And if you dont believe me – there is a former software colleague calling out the “End is Near” message on a Downtown corner.

(c)JBsurveyer 2006

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