Quarterly Wrap-up

Mobile first-quarter 2013: analysis and outlook

The mobile platform wars escalated once again in the first quarter of 2012 as BlackBerry finally took the wraps off its much-anticipated new operating system. Meanwhile Android continued to build on its dominance both worldwide and in the U.S., cementing a two-horse race with Apple.

WibiData open sources Kiji to make HBase easier

HBase is a great option for developing big data applications, but it’s not necessarily easy to use. WibiData is addressing this by open sourcing a portion of its predictive analytics infrastructure that adds structure to data, followed eventually by a whole HBase development framework called Kiji.

Salesforce pushes Heroku into big biz with full Java stack support

Heroku is morphing from what was a Ruby-focused PaaS for web developers to a fully Java-supportive PaaS for big business. At least that’s what CEO Marc Benioff hopes as he integrates Heroku — purchased in 2010 — more tightly into the company’s overall platform.

Will Go be the new go-to programming language?

The Go language is gaining momentum among PaaS and IaaS vendors, says Apcera founder and CEO Derek Collison. Research shows the language gaining ground, although it hasn’t cracked the top 20. JavaScript and Java remain top dogs among overall programing languages.

Quick tip: Do you need Java on your Mac?

Java doesn’t come pre-installed for on OS X as it once did. You may have manually installed it, but it’s likely that besides a few web sites and an occasional piece of software you may want to run, you don’t really need Java on your Mac.

What WORA can tell us about the future of the cloud

“Write once, run anywhere” (WORA) was hot stuff years ago. Today, a new technology wave is forming, “Deploy once, scale anywhere,” or DOSA. Gaurav Pal of Smartronix, Inc. believes the history of WORA holds clues to how current cloud computing paradigms may evolve.

“Leap second” bugs take out some prominent websites

It was a rough weekend for the internet. While Friday’s problems with Amazon Web Services and other sites could be chalked up to some wicked thunderstorms, several sites went down Saturday for periods of time thanks to problems with the “leap second.”

Amazon woos Microsoft devs with .NET, SQL Server support

Let it never be said that the cloud computing wars are boring. Within hours of being blasted for locking developers into its ever-rising cloud stack, Amazon announced new managed database services and Elastic Beanstalk support for thousands of Microsoft-centric developers.

Heroku boss: 1.5M apps, many not in Ruby

According to former Heroku CEO and current VP of Platforms Byron Sebastian, Heroku is hosting more than 1.5 million applications — an increase of approximately 15x in less than 18 months. It’s success is part of an industry trend toward PaaS acceptance for new apps.

This week in the Oracle/Google trial: Week 1

One of the biggest trials in the recent history of the tech industry is in full swing, as Oracle and Google argue whether or not Google improperly used technology from Oracle’s Java when developing Android. Here’s what has happened during the first week of the trial.

Game time: Oracle, Google set to face off over Android

On Monday, Google will get a chance to defend Android–the leading mobile operating system in the world, the linchpin of its mobile strategy and a lightning rod for criticism–in open court against those who charge Google has stolen its way into smartphones. A primer:

Now it’s VMware’s turn: Meet Spring Hadoop

When Microsoft and VMware latch onto a technology, you know it’s for real. VMware is now pushing a project called Spring Hadoop that lets developers use the popular Spring Java framework to write big data applications atop Apache Hadoop.

Big data skills bring big dough

If you are a data scientist, or have other “big data” chops, you can write your own ticket, headhunters say. A search of popular job posting sites shows huge demand for anyone who can demonstrate these skills even in this tough economy.

CloudBees puts its PaaS anywhere

CloudBees Java-centric platform as a service can now run inside a customer’s data center, at a hosting provider or on the Amazon cloud, or on some combination of the above. Anycloud will compete with Red Hat OpenShift, and VMware’s Cloud Foundry.

Veteran PaaS player Engine Yard claims big momentum

Engine Yard, the popular platform as a service, said its revenue doubled to $28 million and the number of paying customers rose 50 percent to 2,000 in 2011. The company, which started in the Ruby universe, now supports PHP, Node.js and other languages.

Survey: NoSQL adoption driven by schema hate

Database professionals planning to take the NoSQL leap this year said the restrictive schemas in the RDBMS world drove their move. High latency, high cost and inability to scale out were also cited as reasons to move beyond SQL databases.

AppFog gets (more) multilingual with Java support

AppFog, which started out as a PHP-based Platform-as-a-Service, just added Java to its roster of supported programming languages. AppFog already added support for Ruby and Node.js. Still to come: support for Python, .NET and “smaller languages like Erlang,” said AppFog CEO Lucas Carlson.

SpringSource links up with Neo Technology on NoSQL

SpringSource, the application-platform arm of VMware, has been working closely with NoSQL startup Neo Technology to produce a version of the Neo4j graph database optimized for Spring environments. Additionally, SpringSource founder and GM Rod Johnson is now chairman of Neo’s board of directors.

Java developers, meet Heroku

Heroku, the popular Platform-as-a-Service offering initially for Ruby developers only, now supports Java. Actually, Heroku has added support for both the Node.js framework and the Clojure programming language over the past few months, but Java is in a whole other league.

CumuLogic enters public beta for private PaaS

Cloud computing startup CumuLogic is making its Platform-as-a-Service software available for beta users that want to deploy it on their own infrastructure. Until now, CumuLogic’s Jave-only PaaS software had only been available for beta users running it atop the Amazon Web Services cloud.

Can patent licensing fees derail the Android express?

The Android Express has taken Google and a number of manufacturers on dizzying ride to the top of the smartphone market. But with Android’s patent strength increasingly under fire and companies lining up for their share of licensing fees, is the platform headed off the tracks?

Heroku adds Clojure to its mix, targets enterprise apps

PaaS pioneer Heroku has added support for the Clojure programming language to its offering. Heroku also supports Ruby and Node.js as development options. Supporting three development options might not appear like a big deal, but it is, especially for enterprise developers who require certain features.

It’s time to start worrying and hate the patent bomb

With patent lawsuits flying around the mobile business like never before, it’s easy to get lost in exciting headlines about billion dollar settlements. But the reality is that the industry is playing a game of mutually assured destruction that could strangle the world’s most exciting technologies.

VMware’s platform play could use a cloud connection

VMware announced the late-summer availability of vFabric 5 this morning, an integrated suite of the various application-platform components it has acquired over the past couple years. The news illustrates pretty definitively that, for the time being, VMware’s on-premise and cloud-based platform strategies are fairly distinct.

CloudBees goes premium with pay-per-use Java PaaS

CloudBees, the Java-focused Platform-as-a-Service company, is now offering a paid “Premium” version of its RUN@cloud PaaS offering. CloudBees, it appears, is trying to gain a foothold in the PaaS space while other Java-focused efforts are still getting underway.

Software AG Buys Terracotta to Build New Cloud Platform

German software vendor Software AG has bought Java-performance expert Terracotta with the goal of creating a cloud application platform to rival those from Software AG competitors such as Oracle, VMware and IBM. Terracotta has built a portfolio of open-source products over the past several years.

CloudBees Extends Java PaaS to OpenStack, VMware Users

CloudBees is now offering its RUN@cloud service as software that lets users build their own PaaS environments on OpenStack- or VMware vSphere-based infrastructure. Choice in PaaS deployment environments is becoming a new must-have feature, especially in light of Amazon’s recent outage and projects like Cloud Foundry.

CloudBees Java Platform Is Open for Business

Just a month after hurriedly closing a deal to acquire competitor Stax Networks, CloudBees’ RUN@cloud Java platform as a service is available for public use. CloudBees deserves credit for making its offering available while others are still in development.

Jan. 24: What We’re Reading About the Cloud

Two trends dominate today’s links – Java and stock prices. Some big names in trading have data center operators and set for falling share prices, and in the world of Java it’s a neat inforgraphic and more claims of Google lifting code for Android.

CumuLogic Bringing Sun Cloud Roots to Java PaaS

The growing Java PaaS market will soon need to make room for CumuLogic, an startup led by a team of Sun Microsystems veterans. The Sun connection is notable because Sun was the Java owner and development leader before its acquisition by Oracle early last year.

PaaS Consolidation Continues as CloudBees Buys Stax Networks

CloudBees, fresh off closing a $4 million funding round, has acquired fellow Java PaaS startup Stax Networks. The move might seem inconsequential — both companies are relatively unknown — but it signals that the PaaS consolidation kicked off by Red Hat and might just be beginning.

Apache Software Foundation Packs Its Toys and Goes Home

The Apache Software Foundation resigned its seat on the Java SE/EE Executive Committee Thursday, according to a blog post and email sent out to committers. Apache had threatened to leave the committee last month over licensing concerns for its software.

Dec. 8: What We’re Reading About the Cloud

Believe it or not, there was cloud activity today outside of buying Heroku. What struck me was Oracle defining Java victory on its own terms, Microsoft announcing the forthcoming SQL Azure Reporting, SAP’s mission to change BI and open source expert Matt Asay leaving Canonical.

Which Java-PaaS Options Will Win Developers’ Hearts?

Suddenly, it seems, Java PaaS, an area once devoid of options, is swimming with choices. Makara, CloudBees, App Engine, Windows Azure and more all support Java. Now, it’s not a matter of who’ll step up and offer a Java-capable PaaS service, but which approaches are sustainable.

CloudBees Gets $4M for Java PaaS Plans

Boston-based cloud computing startup CloudBees has received $4 million to advance its vision of building a top-to-bottom Java Platform as a Service (PaaS). CloudBees already offers a Java development Platform as a Service, but its plans include a production-ready Java runtime PaaS called RUN@cloud.

Google Throws the Kitchen Sink at Oracle in Android Java Suit

This legal battle between Oracle and Google just keeps getting better and better. Google has answered Oracle’s amended complaint that Android infringed on Oracle’s Java patents with a wide ranging defense that includes charges that Oracle doctored code to bolster its case against Google.

Nov. 10: What We’re Reading About the Cloud

It’s all about disruption today: Apple OS X becoming a more-appealing server OS, NoSQL being too disruptive for some, ARM enabling high-performance server systems, Apache threatening to pull the plug on Java development, and IT vendors not getting that cloud computing is supposed to be disruptive.

Java Is Under Siege. Will Oracle Let It Burn?

There was a time when Java ruled the enterprise computing world, and showed signs of dominating the mobile world, too. That time is gone. It’s not that developers have abandoned Java wholesale, but given recent moves by apple, Oracle and Google there is room for concern.

Oct. 19: What We’re Reading About Infrastructure

It’s a good time to be a Java developer, as illustrated by VMware’s cloud-based development environment and Azul’s elastic Java runtime and management software. Also, it’s good to be CSC: Huge customers are signing up for cloud collaboration software, and CSC always seems to be involved.

Do We Need a Global App Store for Feature Phones?

The Wholesale Applications Community, which will “increase the overall market for mobile applications” has announced new members and published a developer specification for apps that can work across many devices and carriers. But so far, it’s just a spec for widgets. Do we need a WAC?

Google Seeks Dismissal of Oracle’s Android Patent Suit

Google this morning asked a court to dismiss Oracle’s patent suit alleging the Android operating system violates Oracle’s newly acquired patents and copyrights for Java. Google asserts it has not violated any of the alleged patents, which Oracle obtained after it bought Sun Microsystems.

What to Read This Weekend: How Nielsen Works

Ever wondered how shows like Venture Bros can survive on TV? iO9 has the answer, and it may surprise you: The blog has taken an in-depth look at the Nielsen ratings system, including statements from a former Nielsen family member and a look at future trends.


Report: NoSQL Databases – Providing Extreme Scale and Flexibility

The goal of this report is to explain the role of NoSQL databases within the context of the database market in general, to provide information regarding primary vendors and projects, to illustrate how NoSQL databases provide the most benefit to enterprise and web information systems architects, and to provide recommendations for evaluation, implementation and development.

Quarterly Wrap-up

In Q3, Cloud Computing Grew, Bringing Hardware & Services With It

Growing maturity in the cloud computing market was evident during the third quarter, with a focus on standards, APIs and more private cloud offerings. That growth was echoed by continued evolution in the data center space, as unified computing solutions proliferated, and in the data analysis world, with Hadoop pushing into ever more new markets. But despite this growing maturity, financial numbers revealed during the third quarter were mixed, with some notable acquisitions on the positive side but weak earnings statements plaguing many players.


What VMware’s SpringSource Acquisition Means for Microsoft

On Aug. 10, 2009, VMware announced a definitive agreement to acquire privately held open source Java application framework and platform developer SpringSource for $420 million ($331 million in cash, $31 million in equity for vested options, $58 million for unvested stocks/options). Customers will ultimately care about VMware’s acquisition of SpringSource because together the two will be able to offer a tightly integrated enterprise and cloud application platform similar to Microsoft’s server products, including the .NET application frameworks, Windows Server application runtime platform, and Systems Center management product offerings. The tight integration that VMware, Microsoft, and ultimately IBM and Oracle, aspire to offer — with slightly different approaches — is critical for bringing down dramatically the TCO of enterprise and cloud applications built on these platforms. This note examines the acquisition and its impact on a brewing battle between Microsoft and VMware.


Are Torrents a Tool for Predicting the Future?

File-sharing blogs are currently abuzz about a new generation of BitTorrent services — sites like or — that allow users to offload their P2P downloads to the cloud by offering something like a personal file-sharing web service. Search for a file, let the service download it for you from other people’s hard drives, and then transfer it from the cloud to any device of your liking. File-sharing web services like these may sound like yet another headache for Hollywood and the music industry, but they may provide an interesting case study for the adoption of cloud technologies by consumers.


Open-Source Startups Follow Red Hat’s Path To Profit

When database giant Oracle recently announced its intent to acquire Sun Microsystems, a shock wave went around the open source community. Sun, along with Red Hat and Novell, is one of only three public companies focused primarily on open source software. Pummeled by the stock market last year and stymied by poor financial results, Sun was identified by many as an acquisition target even before Oracle’s announcement, and there are now many questions surrounding its open source efforts as it loses independence as a public company. Novell, too, is seen by many as an acquisition target following poor financial performance and a stock market beating. Among public open source firms, that leaves only Red Hat reporting quarter after quarter of strong, stable earnings, with a healthy market capitalization of more than $3 billion and more than $800 million in cash. What is Red Hat’s secret sauce, then?

IBM + Sun = Good, or Bad, for Green?

Ever since the Wall Street Journal reported last week that IBM was in talks to buy Sun Microsystems for $6.5 billion in…

Skype: Coming to a Cell Phone Near You

Yesterday, Skype announced the availability of two new beta clients for mobile phones: Skype for Windows Mobile 2.5 beta and a renamed…

Nvidia Machine Takes a Spot on the Top Supercomputer List

For the first time ever, a supercomputer using Nvidia chips has achieved a spot on the Top 500 list of the world’s fastest supercomputers released late Friday. The Nvidia-containing machine is ranked 29 and is a cluster built by NEC and Sun that uses chips from Nvidia, Intel (s INTC) and AMD.

Sun Microsystems to Lay Off 350

Sun Microsystems plans to lay off about 350 employees in January. The computer systems maker said in a WARN letter that it would lay off 352 people between January 5 and January 25 across the U.S. citing a “need to reduce overall spending in its fiscal year 2009.”

Graphics Processors Grow Up, Go Corporate

These days, thanks to a visually intensive style of computing, a good GPU can improve the user experience much better than a fast CPU. In the data center certain tasks are moving from commodity CPU boxes to GPUs, meaning that over the next year or two, more of them will be sold for corporate computing use.

Sony Ericsson To Combine Flash And Java

Sony (NYSE: SNE) Ericsson (NSDQ: ERIC) has announced “new technology that lets developers combine Adobe’s (NSDQ: ADBE) Flash Lite and Java M…

5 Questions for Vinod Khosla

No name is more synonymous with cleantech investing than Sun Microsystems co-founder turned venture capitalist Vinod Khosla. His Khosla Ventures invested between…

One to Watch: ooyala

Trumpeting its founders’ Google heritage, Mountain View-based stealth-mode startup ooyala says it is “focused on delivering a high-quality, interactive, video-viewing experience.” As…

Christmas Easter Eggs

After sitting down after a wonderful day of family, feasts and fun, I checked my email. While it was downloading, I opened…

PSP, Google and Odeo

BBC says DIY crowd been quick to embrace Sony’s PlayStation Portable console. Of course, I said so nearly two weeks ago –…

Everything’s wrong at Intel?

Intel CEO Craig Barrett is hopping mad about things going wrong at Intel all the time. “Barrett says he has spoken “bluntly…

Smallest MP3 Player

Samsung Electronics just announced the world’s smallest MP3 player. The new YP-T5 MP3 model is much like a fashion-accessory with its 5.4…