On the object-orientation front, vendors that are committing to this technology have cause to feel warm and cosy if a document circulating in the UK is anything to go by. An information technology users organisation comprising such household names as British Aerospace, British Airways, BP Research, British Telecom, Barclays, Ford Motor Co, Lloyds, NatWest, TSB, ICI, HM Treasury (representing UK government users) and the Department of Trade & Industry, is asking selected vendors to help them assess the credibility of object orientation as the mainstream development approach of the 90s. Key vendors are being asked to help these users to gain an understanding of the approach; agree the benefits and costs; provide facilities to communicate and demonstrate the concepts; research hardware technology and the maturity of methodologies and tools for all phases of the life cycle; research the necessary management, cultural and organisational changes; provide guidance on when and where to start; and, finally, (are you paying attention third generation database vendors?), influence the market for object-oriented products and services by demonstrating demand and providing direction. Among the users, four teams have been formed to investigate the analysis, implementation, environment and management areas of object-oriented technology. These teams will report back in about six months. All of which is most puzzling when you consider that certain software vendors would have us all believe that common or garden users are not yet interested in object-oriented technology.
The standards body The Object Management Group, based in Framingham, Massachusetts, is asking for information concerning technologies that will assist in defining what it terms the Object Request Broker. This will provide the mechanism by which objects transparently make and receive requests and responses. It is intended that a common Object Request Broker will provide interoperability between applications on different machines in heterogenous distributed environments, seamlessly interconnecting multiple object systems. The Broker will be the key element in the Group’s Object Management Architecture – any offers, Microsoft?