TAMINO, BOLERO, XML – AS MEANS OF ACTIVE INTERNET-TECHNOLOGIES DEVELOPMENT
Klaus D. Kirst, O.V. Kitova
In the past, information technology (IT) was mainly used to facilitate the business processes within a company. In the days of World Wide Web, however, this is no longer true - IT is increasingly becoming customer-driven. Serving a customer well means not only providing the right products, but also supporting with buying and payment procedures, and other value-added services. these activities are increasingly based on electronic information processing with Internet as the main communications network.
Information describing customers, requirements, buying patterns, and how to build customer products is no longer kept in a central location. It is distributed both inside and outside a company and must be accessed and combined in flexible ways in order to deliver products and services on time.
This new business computing model needs a new type of software: Web-enabled information servers, which can efficiently handle complex information objects, integrate Internet information objects with existing data sources and are highly scalable and robust. The Tamino Information Server and Bolero, the Application Factory for Electronic Business, the key products of Software AG's Electronic Business strategy, combine these requirements into one architecture.
As computers and Internet access become ubiquitous, conducting business activities over the Internet is becoming a realty. Among consumers, the Internet has already passed the stage of early adopters. Now that pioneers such as Amazon.com, Dell and Federal Express have demonstrated success with Web-based businesses, large companies like Bertelsmann and IBM are moving agressively into Electronic Business. Yet Electronic Business includes more than store fronts. Electronic Business includes all kinds of business activities: market research, promotion, sales, distribution, payment, finance, supply chains, recruitment, reporting, etc. An integrated Electronic Business solution can substantially reduce staff costs via direct customer access and automated buying processes, reduce communication and IT costs by using open Internet technology, improve customer services and communication with partners and staff by providing transparent insight into business processes, provide information for auditing and market research, provide accurate up-to-date management information allowing faster and more effective decision making.
A core problem in Electronic Business is the integration of data islands. A variety of incompatible data formats, isolated IT structures, platform-specific security concepts, highly specific and non-transferable software solutions are all counter-productive to a unified, global, and scalable communication model.
The world is moving faster. The collaps of Asian markets, the introduction of Euro, the explosive growth of the Internet, the emergence of new technologies, and the deregulation of telecommunication markets all fuel a constant regrouping of market forces. Mergers, acquisitions and global alliances have become frequent events.
All these new dynamic forces require constant business reengineering activities, very often implying radical changes. New business strategies must be implemented in a very short time to stay competitive. Electronic Business and Internet operations, today located at the periphery of corporate IT, will amalgamate with core IT activities.
This calls for an IT infrastructure in which new applications can cooperate easily with existing components, applications, systems, and human resources. While rapid pace of Electronic Business and the protection of future market suggests a "permanent IT revolution", the protection of investments in equipment, staff, and customer bases demands more evolutionary measures. IT must be able to implement radical changes both as quickly and smoothly as possible.
Tamino, the world's fastest XML server by Software AG, sets out to provide exactly this - the ability to change smoothly but radically - becouse Tamino combines Web-enabling technology, cutting-edge database technology and connectivity to existing data. The Tamino Information server is a completely new development, an integrated solution. And Bolero is a comprehensive, object-oriented application environment for generating and maintained component-basis business application for the Java platform. The classes for integer, decimal and date arithmetic, transaction control, object-relational mapping and DCOM functionality are thus integrated in the Bolero Application Server.
Special thanks for our partner - Scientific Research Institute "BITIS" - for help in preparing of this paper.