Supporters of IBM Corp’s San Francisco component based development environment (see related story) include Symantec Corp with its Visual Cafe Pro, Microsoft Corp with J++ and, of course IBM with own VisualAge for Java. San Francisco will help independent software vendors to make their job better, says Carter. Core plumbing is not where they make their money. It is in writing applications for vertical markets and customizing applications. Niche vendors will also be better able to integrate with other applications. San Francisco code could represent up to 40% of the total application, but the cost will have been spread over all the vendors selling applications based on the architecture. Complete applications should start appearing by the end of the year. IBM will be paid by software vendors on a royalty basis whenever a copy of a San Francisco-based application is sold. End-user companies will also be able to buy San Francisco for around $500 per development seat but software vendors remain IBM’s main focus. IBM itself won’t offer complete San Francisco-based applications except in those geographies where the company already has business applications, such as Germany and Italy, where it will migrate those applications to San Francisco. Server components will run initially on AIX and Windows NT, with Windows 95 as the client. Support for AS/400 and other Unix flavors will appear later in the year. In the first instance, the components will run on Java virtual machines on top of the operating system but as the compiler technology for Java matures, it will also be possible to run compiled server versions to improve performance. IBM also intends to link San Francisco to its Component Broker Connector middleware (CI No. 3,160) once it is Java-enabled. IBM is still working out a certification process for San Francisco-based components and applications.