Symantec will later this year put an enterprise spin on its Java development efforts by building in interfaces to its development tools making it easier for customers to adapt and develop server database applications.
In an exclusive interview CEO and chairman Gordon Eubanks said a release later this year of the Café line of development tools will have more of a server emphasis, taking it away from being a direct competitor to Microsoft's Visual J++.
"We will augment our products with application specific interfaces. If you look at SAP, PeopleSoft, Baan, Scopus, JD Edwards... there are about 12 companies to cover," Eubanks said.
"Java is very portable and, on the server, portability is really important. On the desktop side customers have decided on their operating system and it's Microsoft but on servers you have to support not just Intel but water-cooled Alphas and S/390s... a very wide range of hardware. Java has become the interface to legacy data. Café will be much more aimed at database development on servers and we will augment our products with application specific interfaces. If you look at SAP, Oracle, IBM, PeopleSoft, Baan, Scopus [now part of Siebel Systems], JD Edwards... there are about 12 companies to cover. Before we do that the missing piece is really [to interface to] systems like BEA. There's a big opportunity to sell customers application servers and we want to be part of that.
Eubanks also said Symantec will work with consulting services and other third-parties to bolster its Java enterprise effort. However, he was at pains to point out that the Java plan isn't a dagger aimed at Microsoft - its partner in Windows utilities.
"The problem with Java is it's symbolised as anti-Microsoft. Somehow, if you support Java you're doing them in. We see Java as something customers can use on their servers."