Migent Inc, the Incline Village, Nevada company determined to supplant Ashton-Tate Corp and its dBase in the micro database stakes for the 80386 generation of personal computers, finally launched its while hope, the Emerald Bay multi-user database engine last week – with simultaneous launches in the US and UK (CI No 899) and launches in France and Germany expected this month. The company has decided that its future success rests on a close relationship with software developers and is wooing them with a range of offerings in the Emerald Bay package. Only one user application has so far been launched – a Lotus 1-2-3 add-in, Summit – but Migent is looking to developers to come up with the goodies as far as meeting users’ application needs is concerned. According to Wayne Ratliff, who was on the original dBase design team, and developed Emerald Bay, the principal aim of the new database is to offer software development tools for ‘next generation’ products. Migent International managing director Jan Feaster expands on this, saying that Migent wants to establish itself as the developer’s ally, and to that end, the company will not charge royalties for resale of its technology by developers. Migent claims that Emerald Bay offers the database market the first environment- and language-independent database server, enabling multiple and diverse applications to share data in a single or multi-user environment. It has been launched as four products: a database server costing UKP595 for local area network data management and control; a developers’ toolkit for C at UKP395, a database programming language, UKP395; and Summit, a database add-in for Lotus 1-2-3 priced at UKP159, now.
A new and better way to implement data management At the heart of the Emerald Bay concept is its language independent, multi-user Database Server. The engine stores data and distributes it to any user in a network, regardless of application, and eventually – though Migent does not say when regardless of operating system. The Database Server enables all Emerald Bay applications to become multi-user on most local area networks. It also handles multi-user data security and integrity. Users can share the same data which is located in the Database Server while using different applications. With Emerald Bay we created a new and better way to implement data management. Our goal was to provide software that would allow today’s personal computer users to enjoy mainframe functionality,’ Ratliffe says. According to Charles Hamilton, Migent’s president and chief executive, additional phases of Emerald Bay products will allow data stored in the Emerald Bay Database Server to be shared by such non-compatible operating systems such as OS/2, MacDOS and Unix. IBM’s SQL Structured Query Language will be supported in future releases. According to Migent there are around 600,000 dBase and C language independent developers and it looks for a full 300,000 of these to take Emerald Bay on board. It reckons that users will find the Summit back-end for 1-2-3 particularly useful because it bridges the gap between a database and spreadsheet by allowing the Lotus Development Corp product to perform recalculations and analysis of data stored in the Emerald Bay database engine. Summit is Emerald Bay’s first end-user offering. Because data is placed in the Database Server, rather than in the spreadsheet, Migent hopers to offer Summit users faster re-calculation times and savings in memory. Summit includes a personal engine, report writer, forms generator, database administrator, and importexport capabilities. Migent hopes to establish a symbiotic relationship with software developers by ensuring that applications developed for Emerald Bay will give both the developer and Migent itself products that large corporations will buy. Since these new applications operate on the Emerald Bay Database Server, Migent expects a market to be simultaneously created for those same applications. Migent also hopes that its Eagle language will appeal to developers by offering a database applications dev
elopment language that offers programmers a more efficient and faster language than dBase. The Eagle package includes a personal engine, a compiler, report writer, forms generator, database administrator, and importexport capabilities. The Toolkit offers a set of utilities that provide access to the database engine, and is designed to enable programmers to create new applications faster and more easily. The Toolkit includes a personal engine, report writer, forms generator, database administrator and import-export capabilities. All applications immediately become multi-user when placed in a network on top of the Database Server. Just whether Emerald Bay makes any of Migent’s rivals green with envy will depend on the reception that developers give it: a thumbs down from them will scuttle Migent’s strategy because Emerald Bay without more applications is unlikely to attract many users.