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June 27, 1990


By CBR Staff Writer

IBM wants its Systems Application Architecture to have a chance in non-IBM shops with open systems, and it is forging links between Unix and SAA to achieve that end, according to Computer Systems News. When SAA was introduced in 1987, the two appeared to be deliberately distanced, but that seems to have changed since the RS/6000 announcement. Not only has IBM requested that the American National Standards Institute weave SAA specifications for databases into a new standard, but it has announced that an AIX 3 database will interoperate with DB2 under SAA. Computer System News also claims that IBM is busily reinventing the wheel by developing its own version of CICS for AIX, despite the fact that VISystems of Dallas already has a CICS for Unix that is offered by IBM among others. IBM is under a two-fold pressure to take Unix seriously. The commercial community is increasingly willing to accept the once cultish operating system – especially in Europe – and communication products from DEC et al can now be sold into IBM accounts. Despite IBM’s initial insistence for US consumption that the RS/6000 would be sold into the scientific and engineering market, the company says it is now looking for success in the commercial world in the US. The shortage of applications is regarded as short-term, and a number of IBM’s customers is writing software for the RS/6000. However, success may be dependent on how quickly IBM links the new Unix machine to its proprietary products, thereby compromising the AS/400 and 9370, as well as the number of commercial applications available.

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