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BEA Systems and BlueDragon: A Blended Development

Interview with Blake Connell, Director of Product Marketing for WebLogic Server, BEA Systems

After BEA's announcement regarding their release of the BlueDragon BEA WebLogic Server, SYS-CON Media had the chance to talk with Blake Connell.

SYS-CON: Tell us about your BlueDragon announcement.

Blake Connell: We're announcing and making available for download BlueDragon BEA WebLogic Edition, enabling the movement of existing ColdFusion and CFML applications onto a modern platform, BEA WebLogic Server. Our customers can now take existing applications as is (and) unmodified, a key benefit, and move them to a platform we know and love that is Java-compatible. They can get all the benefits such as failover, clustering, and advanced administration capabilities without having to rework their applications

SYS-CON: How will you be offering it? Is this being done through a license?

Connell: We're working with New Atlanta and are offering it on our Website for download, as well as supporting it directly. You can download it today to use for development purposes without any fees or restrictions. Then, if you put it into production, we have a per-CPU pricing model and support.

SYS-CON: How will your customers be able to reuse legacy code? How does this work?

Connell: It's fairly straightforward. You are literally repackaging your CFML applications as either EAR or WAR files. Your audience is familiar with enterprise archives and Web archives, and you simply wrap them up and they get to port on top of WebLogic Server, as any Java application would. It's then available for all of the advanced capabilities in WebLogic Server 9, such as failing over, administrative features - it will appear in the console - the management capabilities and the monitoring functionality. So again, you simply take an existing application and rewrap it in a standard format and deploy.

SYS-CON: What sort of legacy apps, in what sort of vertical markets are you addressing?

Connell: One of the interesting things about CFML and ColdFusion is that it predates Java and was really one of the first platforms to create dynamic applications on the Internet. So there's a massive installed base and large development community as well. The applications span just about every vertical and industry marketplace out there.

We have customers in government who have made this move, in large financial services firms who have used this combination of BlueDragon right on top of WebLogic Server, as well as large airlines and transportation companies. It really runs the gamut.

SYS-CON: Do you have any specific references you can talk about?

Connell: Yes, we've referenced an application with the State of Georgia. This is a publicly available reference, and there are others.

SYS-CON: How does the Blue Dragon announcement fit into BEA's overall application development strategy?

Connell: One of the things we announced at JavaOne last year was this notion of blended development, which primarily means that we take the best of open source and commercial code, blend the two together, and provide support for the single entity. The BlueDragon announcement plays into this strategy in that, although it's not open source, we are taking a non-traditional Java architectural development environment and blending it with a modern platform, WebLogic Server.

It plays into the general notion of what we believe customers want, which is the ability to leverage frameworks that aren't necessarily developed through the Java Community Process with those that are.

SYS-CON: So you're not locked into a single way of doing anything. In this case, it seems you are blending two separate communities into a unified environment that lets customers port legacy apps.

Connell: That's exactly it and it allows investments that have been made in CFML and ColdFusion to be maintained. Being able to maintain those investments is important to our customers.

SYS-CON: And more information can be found where?

Connell: More information can be found at www.bea.com, then select the WebLogic product area, and you'll find the BlueDragon BEA WebLogic Edition product in that family, and be able to get information about how to download the software.

More Stories By Roger Strukhoff

Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040) is Executive Director of the Tau Institute for Global ICT Research, with offices in Illinois and Manila. He is Conference Chair of @CloudExpo & @ThingsExpo, and Editor of SYS-CON Media's CloudComputing BigData & IoT Journals. He holds a BA from Knox College & conducted MBA studies at CSU-East Bay.

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WLDJ News Desk 05/15/06 12:33:03 PM EDT

After BEA's announcement regarding their release of the BlueDragon BEA WebLogic Server, SYS-CON Media had the chance to talk with Blake Connell.