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May 6, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:19pm


By CBR Staff Writer

Tibco Inc appears to be quietly beating the so-called push technology companies at their own game with a technology that was created before many of the pioneers even went to university.

The 10-year-old division of Reuters Holdings Plc has announced 10 more licensees for its TIB (The Information Bus) publish/subscribe multicasting technology, including some big guns in IBM Corp and 3Com and two of the push evangelists themselves, BackWeb Technologies Inc and inCommon Inc. Tibco declined to comment on whether or not it was talking to Marimba Inc. TIB is widely in use in Wall Street to get financial information down to traders’ screens. It should be remembered that Tibco began offering up TIB for free last December to try and establish it as a standard, but last week Tibco said most of these 10 licensees did pay royalties, without naming names. But it’s clear that establishing a standard is at the forefront of Tibco’s mind. The licensees get Tibco’s software developer’s kit (SDK) to build TIB applications using the company intelligent middleware, plus an intelligent agent to put in their applications.

Push people

Multicasting has an advantage over the so-called push technologies, because whereas the push stuff has to poll the servers to see if there are any updates that should be downloaded, multicasting enables to broadcast of a single packet to all listeners, rather than firing off one after the other. But it also has something of a probelm in that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) don’t want to handle it because it would mean upgrading their systems. With the exception of a couple of ISPs, Tibco hasn’t made much progress in persuading other ISPs to take multicasts yet. TIB technology enables subject based, rather than address-based, interchange of information between applications and is used in publish and subscribe communications middleware, including both real-time messaging and message queuing for secure delivery. It comes integrated with Tibco’s own Corba 2.0 compliant Object Request Broker (ORB). Tibco develops a host of end-to-end software on top of TIB. IBM will train its Global Services consulting arm to market and sell the Tibco products, while 3Com says it will integrate TIB with its DynamicAccess software, which is part of its TranscendWare software. BackWeb says it will use the Tibco middleware to push content down its channels through personalized multicasting. This will be third push protocol for BackWeb in the seven months or so since it was launched. Initially BackWeb used its own UDP-based Polite Agent protocol technology, but found that it had difficulty getting through firewalls, and so introduced an HTTP- based server in March. The TIB technology gives BackWeb both real-time and multicasting capabilities. BackWeb business development director Nicky Nash said as multicasting is not very PC-friendly – it takes up the whole session until the data is donwloaded – it is more suitable for urgent information, whereas UDP or HTTP should be used for programmatic information and software updates. The TIB-enabled BackWeb server is out in August. The other licensees are fellow push people inCommon, as well as Autonomy, First Floor, Open Horizon, VXtreme and Elemental Software, which is adding a TIB component to its Drumbeat component-based development environment do developers can develop TIB, as well as ActiveX and JavaBean-based applications. Previous licensees inlclude Microsoft Corp which will use the middleware in its Viper transaction server, plus Oracle, Informix, Cisco, VeriSign, CyberCash, Diffusion, Intermind and DataChannel.

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