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What an IBM-Sun Merger Might Mean For Java, MySQL, Developers 292

Posted by timothy
from the get-our-your-auguring-tools dept.
An IBM-Sun merger is a tantalyzing possibility; snydeq writes "Fatal Exception's Neil McAllister suggests that an IBM/Sun merger could crown Big Blue king of enterprise software development. 'Acquiring Sun would make IBM the clear leader in Java, as it would become the caretaker of the open source reference implementation of the JRE,' which, along with GlassFish, would become entry-level gateways to IBM's WebSphere stack. Moreover, MySQL would give IBM's database division a significant entry-level hook, and NetBeans/Eclipse would unify IBM's front against Visual Studio. 'All in all, this move would solidify IBM's role as "the developer company,"' McAllister writes. 'In other words, if this merger goes through and you're an enterprise developer and you're not an IBM customer now, get ready — because you soon will be. Better bring your wallet.'" And blackbearnh writes with a short interview with Brian Aker (who came to Sun as MySQL's director of architecture, and is now the lead for MySQL fork Drizzle) about what life would be like under Big Blue's control.
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What an IBM-Sun Merger Might Mean For Java, MySQL, Developers

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:33PM (#27346599)

    IBM

    • At first I lulz'd, then I wept.

      Schwartz please, for the love of god, don't let this happen.

      • Let this be a lesson to all you companies out there that are not IBM. Stop being not IBM. IBM will not tolerate any companies that are not IBM, so if you value your shareholder value, stop being not IBM. Any companies that persist in being not IBM will eventually be forced by IBM to stop being not IBM.

        I repeat, if you are not IBM, then you must stop being not IBM immediately, or else.
      • He, unfortunately, almost has to let it happen as it'll probably be the best thing he's capable of doing aside from maybe getting a haircut.
        • by rackserverdeals (1503561) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @06:20PM (#27349565) Homepage Journal

          I'm not sure that Sun's in such a bad position that they might need a buyout.

          Things aren't great right now. They've been cash flow positive for a while up until 2008. That was a big deal considering the beating they've been taking.

          They have a decent amount of cash. Some of their acquisitions may take time to pay off. MySQL, I'm not too sure that was worth 1Bln.

          The strategy Schwartz has takes a big investment and will take time to realize the financial benefits. Right now, with everything going on, it may take longer to realize the financial benefits, but the same conditions also make the acceptance of open source platforms more attractive so it could help spur developer involvement with Sun technologies.

          They may not buy the support or the high margin hardware right now, but in a year or two as the company starts realizing the benefits of using Sun's open source stack, they might pick up support contracts and hardware. Maybe even some of their consulting services. If not, then they become a success story they can use in marketing.

          Sun's big margin customers seem to be in the financial sector and we all know how that sector is doing. Their lower end servers have much lower profit margins. In that space, they have to compete with Dell, and they do pretty well on price. But if you need to scale vertically, you don't have as many options. If you want a big box for your application you also want Solaris on it too. It's the only OS on midrange servers that's worth looking at IMO.

          I'm not sure Sun needs to be bought, but whoever does, if they handle the merger properly, would be getting one hell of a deal.

    • by Kozz (7764) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @04:32PM (#27347565)

      IBS [wikipedia.org].

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:35PM (#27346621)

    The company culture between Sun and IBM are too different for a successful merger. The trend that anything big blue acquires seem to die a slow and agonizing death isn't helping either.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      The trend that anything big blue acquires seem to die a slow and agonizing death isn't helping either. [citation needed]

      I haven't heard about the trend lately. IBM seems to be doing generally pretty well.

      • by davecb (6526) *

        Sequent: it was painful enough NASDAQ publicly ported to Sun.

        --dave

        • by Tanktalus (794810) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @05:06PM (#27348275) Journal

          Apparently, IBM wants that business back.

          Seriously, IBM didn't buy Sequent for Sequent. They bought it for NUMA. And that lives on in AIX (can't recall if it's iSeries or pSeries or both).

          I'm trying to recall something that IBM has bought that died when IBM wanted the technology to live (as opposed to ransacking the company for technology and/or patents to integrate into other products). Lotus? Still alive and kicking (no matter how much some want it to die). Rational? Yup - even displaced some of IBM's software (ClearCase displaced IBM's CMVC). Cognos? Too new to tell. Informix? Still alive and kicking even though that one obviously is something IBM bought to ransack.

          I suspect IBM is looking to buy Sun for Java and OpenOffice (which they're already rebranding as Lotus Symphony), and getting MySQL would be considered a freebie. This makes sense when you realise that IBM is still a little sore about losing the PC OS war, and are doing everything they can to combat Microsoft (e.g., pledging not to pursue patent claims against open-source software, defending Linux against SCO). Java is still seen as a platform to make desktop OS irrelevant, and OpenOffice is a direct attack on Microsoft's other main source of income. Cripple those two aspects of MS, and you've crippled all of MS.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        Here's your citation.

        XyWrite [wikipedia.org]

        Oh and Lotus products seem to be doing well too...

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by vic-traill (1038742)

          Here's your citation. XyWrite

          But IBM never acquired XyWrite, did they? Although, IIRC, they screwed XyQuest and left them holding the bag when IBM bailed. Can I find a citation? [ ... on hold music here ... ] Here 'tis: http://yesss.freeshell.org/x/_xywhat.htm [freeshell.org]

          Too bad - I was a XyWrite fan.

    • by Neil Watson (60859) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:52PM (#27346909) Homepage

      The transition to Notes alone is likely to send Sun talent running for the hills.

    • sir. (Score:2, Interesting)

      by unity100 (970058)

      if mysql dies a slow painful death, it would die alongside ibm's reputation and credibility amongst the i.t. community. especially web developers.

      i dont need to remind you that how big a momentum does the new 'online communities' concept that are built on mysql has nowadays, and the domineering place they are gaining in our online social interaction.

      internet is future, 'the people' online are its embodiment, and web developers are their servicemen.

      • i dont need to remind you that how big a momentum does the new 'online communities' concept that are built on mysql has nowadays, and the domineering place they are gaining in our online social interaction.

        You say that as if it means something. IBM doesn't make money from people sending tweets or whatever the next thing will be.

      • IBM is around a $100B company with fingers in nearly every corner of IT. The portion of that market that gives one iota about IBM's success in merging mysql is a rounding error in that $100B.

        There are a lot more things for IBM to worry about with the merger than the continued success of mysql.

        SirWired

    • "The company culture between Sun and IBM are too different for a successful merger."

      That seems correct to me. The managers at the receiving company don't want to lose power, or learn something new, so they kill or neglect the products they've bought.

      Why does there need to be an even larger computer company? That idea sounds like Sanford Weill and Citibank. Will IBM-Sun also become too large to fail, and require money from U.S. taxpayers?

      Often when these merger deals are made, huge amounts of money
    • by Rasputin (5106) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @05:17PM (#27348453) Homepage

      "The company culture between Sun and IBM are too different for a successful merger."

      Success: [n] Chomp, chomp, gulp.

      Just ask the former employees of Sequent, Informix, or Rational.

  • by javacowboy (222023) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:36PM (#27346649)

    Here's a poll to vote on maintaining Sun's independence from IBM:

    http://www.misterpoll.com/polls/426985/results [misterpoll.com]

    • by The Hooloovoo (78790) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:53PM (#27346941)

      Online petitions work on companies like Facebook because pleasing as many random people as possible is their business model. A Web 2.0 company's product is its users. Nobody pays for Facebook as an end user -- the people paying for Facebook are paying for your ad views, marketing data, etc.

      IBM and Sun shareholders, on the other hand, couldn't give less of a hoot about your feelings. Companies buy software based on a number of factors, but these factors always tie back to the bottom line. Are you going to stop visiting your favorite website because it would be using "IBM Glassfish" instead of "Sun Glassfish"?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ByOhTek (1181381)

      OK. I voted. "No".

      Sorry, I've never been very impressed by Sun, and to be honest, for the longest time, I had better luck with IBMs JVM. Given the choice (and my prior experience), I'll take an IBM product over a Sun product any day.

      Then again, I also have had a Mac and went back, as your sig mentions, so maybe I've just had different experiences, and have different priorities.

      • by evilpenguin (18720) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @07:38PM (#27350621)

        I agree. IBM has been delivering superior support and Java tools for quite a while. Eclipse is the best IDE I have used, apart, perhaps, from the old Borland text-based IDE for Turbo C++.

        And yes, I have used Netbeans and Visual Studio. And Kdevelop and Monodevelop and vim, vi, and emacs. And "brief" back when MS-DOS was the way to go.

        And ed and Turbo Pascal back on CP/M. How many of you young punks used CP/M? Huh? Now get the hell off my lawn!

        IBM is a stodgy old enterprise player, but they are solid and professional. They have been much friendlier to open source in general and Linux in particular than Sun has. I for one welcome our new Big Blue overlords...

    • I don't think I care very much if Sun is acquired by another company, or even which company. Lemme think, a moment or two here. Let's start with "IBM compatible". Yes, IBM was instrumental in creating the personal computer. Somehow, they didn't end up as the great hulking monopoly of personal computing as a result of that. IBM has contributed a lot to computing since then - certainly more than Microsoft, and probably more than any other software company. Big Blue contributes both HARDWARE innovations,
      • by DrSkwid (118965)

        You might want to thank Compaq for breaking open the IBM PC market.
        The market also resisted MCA and grew it's own VGA cards when IBM dropped the ball whiel trying to fence everyone back in.

        There's also that whole Third Reich part but we can gloss over than and look straight at the patent portfolio warchest.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Dogtanian (588974)

        Yes, IBM was instrumental in creating the personal computer.

        Uh, NO.

        IBM may have developed the original " IBM Personal Computer" (ancestor of the models we're still using today). However, they sure as hell did *not* invent the original concept of a personal computer. That had been around for years (arguably originating with the Apple II) and there were already dozens of personal computers by the time IBM's came out.

        Even if we accept that you meant "personal computer" as the later synonym for IBM's PC and compatible rivals, these were nothing revolutionary in the

  • Developers! (Score:2, Funny)

    by castorvx (1424163)

    ... 'All in all, this move would solidify IBM's role as "the developer company,"' ...

    No one tell Ballmer. I'm not sure he could handle this kind of let down.

  • Too big to fail. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tthomas48 (180798) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:45PM (#27346819) Homepage

    Have we learned nothing from the recent "too big to fail" mess? I realize IBM is already too big to fail, but do we want to let them add to it? Sun failing would be fine for the market. Lots of small companies would jump in to take its place. Sun being bought by IBM would stifle the marketplace and would exert far too much control.

    Sometimes to have a free-ish market we have to think about unpleasant topics like anti-trust.

    • by Yetihehe (971185)
      It's like with black holes. Once they are large enough, they won't shrink and will suck in anything nearby.
    • by Bill Dimm (463823)

      Have we learned nothing from the recent "too big to fail" mess?

      Obviously not, or one of the conditions for receiving government bailouts would have been that the companies break up into smaller pieces over some reasonable time frame, so they wouldn't be "too big to fail" in the future. Instead, it's business as usual.

    • by geekoid (135745)

      IBM isn't too big to fail, and neither are the automakers.

      An institution that backs almost all the loans in the world is; becasue if it fails* the loans stop, and many large industries can't get the loans they needs and production stops..pretty much globally.

      There isn't anything IBM does that couldn't be scooped up by other players. OTOH, the practically own the patent on one's and zero's so I don't think they would ever collapse

      *The failure I am talking about is immediate collapse as opposed to a slow fail

    • by russotto (537200)

      Have we learned nothing from the recent "too big to fail" mess? I realize IBM is already too big to fail, but do we want to let them add to it? Sun failing would be fine for the market. Lots of small companies would jump in to take its place. Sun being bought by IBM would stifle the marketplace and would exert far too much control.

      AIG was only "too big to fail" because their failure would have more or less automatically triggered a cascade of failures across the financial system (worse than already happened

      • by tthomas48 (180798)

        Sure because it's not like much of the government and private sector are running on IBM software or hardware. Their contracts becoming worthless would not cascade at all. You've bought into AIG being too big to fail. Wait until IBM makes their case.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by fm6 (162816)

      I share your dislike of mergers, but...

      Sun failing would be fine for the market. Lots of small companies would jump in to take its place.

      Like who? Most of Sun's customers are big corporate and research entities that have no interest in dealing with anybody who doesn't have a huge sales, distribution, and support operation. If they can't buy from Sun, they won't turn to a white box company. They'll turn to IBM, HP, or Dell.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by tthomas48 (180798)

        I think you bring up the fact that there are two facets to Sun. There's hardware and there's their services division. How important you think Sun is to the ecosystem seems to revolve more around whether you're a sysadmin or developer. Most of us developers don't even think about Sun as developing hardware. Most of the SysAdmins don't seem to think of Sun as the controlling force behind Java.

  • ...on the JavaPosse Google group here [google.com]. Some talk about what this might mean for Netbeans, as one of the JavaPosse guys (Tor Norbye) is (was?) on the NB team.

    Also, what would this do for the massive JavaCC book [generating...javacc.com] market? Expand it, I hope!

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Since 5.0 Netbeans has made tremendous improvements and now the combination of Glassfish and Netbeans is a powerhouse for J2EE development. That is real competition for Websphere Studio which costs a heck of a lot of money.

      With EJB3, using EJB's even for smaller projects, using the full J2EE stack is reasonable. The complexity and performance overhead of EJBs is no longer a problem and it makes it very easy to deploy restful web services.

      There's a great video on the matter from an independent developer at C

      • Since 5.0 Netbeans has made tremendous improvements

        This cannot be understated. NetBeans 6.5 is a joy to use. I still personally prefer Visual Studio, but NetBeans is awesome for when I have to use Java or want to develop in PHP. I can see NetBeans supplanting VS for my C++ work in pretty short order.

  • by Amazing Quantum Man (458715) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:51PM (#27346901) Homepage

    Is that new releases of Java and Solaris will be EBCDIC only!

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by mcgrew (92797)

      No, Java will be supercesed by COBOL.

    • Is that new releases of Java and Solaris will be EBCDIC only!

      . . . and distributed in the new, innovative punch card format. An excellent secure media, free from all those meddling kids on the Internet. Or has anyone seen a punch card torrent?

      I'd better start looking on eBay for an old punch card reader. Although, I'd prefer a new one, with a USB interface, of course.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by mhall119 (1035984)

        Or has anyone seen a punch card torrent

        You will if you accidentally knock over a box of them. Or is that a stack dump?

  • by javacowboy (222023) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @03:53PM (#27346931)

    I've said it before, and I'll say it again:

    IBM will take all of Sun's great software products, and either ruin or kill them through a combination of strategic imperative, incompetence, and bureaucracy.

    Say goodbye to Netbeans. IBM doesn't want competition to Eclipse.

    Watch OpenSolaris get pillaged for bits like ZFS and DTrace to GPL and put in Linux and then left in the ditch (though I don't think they'll kill closed-source Solaris).

    Glassfish will survive only because it already has a large independent community, despite IBM cutting off funding for it.

    Java will take twice as long to evolve, as IBM's bureaucracy will dwarf that of the JCP's. Swing will be slowly killed, to be replaced by SWT. As for Websphere, it's known to break the JEE spec, and indicates the direction IBM will take Java in.

    OpenOffice, right now not the cleanest, most user friendly app, will worsen if Lotus Symphony is anything to go by.

    IBM pays good lip service to open source, and contributes o some strategic projects (ex Apache Harmony), but their true commitment to open source is much less than that of Sun's. That's what the Linux crowd sometimes fails to understand.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ByOhTek (1181381)

      Say goodbye to Netbeans. IBM doesn't want competition to Eclipse.

      Why? It doesn't compete with eclipse now. I've used modern and 2 year old installs of eclipse, and my last netbeans install was less than 6 months ago.

      Swing will be slowly killed, to be replaced by SWT. As for Websphere, it's known to break the JEE spec, and indicates the direction IBM will take Java in.

      Good riddance. Most swing based applications I have had the misfortune of using, have failed miserably at being cross platform, regardless of Sun or IBM JVM. Even if SWT is worse in that regard, it doesn't matter, because I've given up on swing as far as making any reliable cross platform app. Replacing one thing that is not sufficiently useful with another,

      • Have you actually tried something that is not centuries old?
        Try the sancho frontend for mldonkey. Or the ThinkingRock life organization software?
        They are a bit slow, but they look better than most apps I've seen and run nicely here on Windows and Linux.

        So stop talking out of your old ass. ^^

        The only problem I have with Swing, is that it tries to have all features imaginable. Thereby adding to the GUI slowness of Java. (Because in raw processing power, Java is actually the most performant VM, if you do not w

    • by Ukab the Great (87152) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @04:09PM (#27347207)

      IBM will take all of Sun's great software products, and either ruin or kill them through a combination of strategic imperative, incompetence, and bureaucracy.

      Isn't that Sun's job?

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by javacowboy (222023)

        Isn't that Sun's job?

        Justify that statement.

        • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 26, 2009 @04:42PM (#27347787)
          Isn't           that           Sun's         job?
        • by fm6 (162816)

          Java. Sun had a pretty good idea there, and thoroughly destroyed it. Oversold it and pushed it out the door before it was really ready to do all the things it was supposed to do.

          To this day, Java has a reputation it doesn't deserve for running slow. This happened because early Java virtual machines were primitive beasts with minimal optimization, and because early Java compilers were hastily hacked out from C++ compilers.

          This last bit of nonsense resulted in Java applications that were full of memory leaks.

      • Isn't that Sun's job?

        Sun's job is to have one of the worst marketing departments known to man. They create some really great stuff, and many of their strategic acquisitions benefit amazingly well under their umbrella. (e.g. OpenOffice, NetBeans, StorageTek, etc.)

        What Sun fails miserably at is selling their products. On one hand, they give everything long, complex, and confusing names. Like "Sun Java System Directory Service", formerly "SunONE Directory Server", formerly "iPlanet Directory Server", formerly "Netscape Directory Server". Then they take this confusing pile of BS directly to executives. Now executives aren't necessarily stupid people. But if you're expecting them to wade through your piles of BS to understand what it is their buying, you've already failed. Throw in a bit of inconsistent pricing across the board to where the IT guy actually buying the stuff has no idea what price he's going to pay, and you've got a recipe for dissatisfaction.

        Sun needs to learn how to market and how to sell. More to the point, they need to pay more attention to the smaller markets and stop trying to out-IBMing IBM. IBM is better at it. Try out-Delling Dell. Sun was on the right track with their "Hotter than Hell" campaign, but they gave up before it ever came to fruition!

        Which is another thing that tees me off. When Sun DOES get it right, they kill it off before they give it a chance to work. Then they go back to their old ways, and probably tell themselves what a fiasco THAT marketing campaign turned out to be. :-/

        • "Sun's job is to have one of the worst marketing departments known to man."

          True or close to true, in my opinion. Except that Intel may be worse, but Intel doesn't need marketing, so the incredible foolishness of Intel's marketing isn't so obvious.

          Mod parent up.
    • by ianare (1132971)

      Say goodbye to Netbeans. IBM doesn't want competition to Eclipse.

      Honestly I think netbeans is just about perfect as-is. Besides, even if they kill corporate funding, I think the community would step in (unlike most open source apps, its users CAN modify it).

      Watch OpenSolaris get pillaged for bits like ZFS and DTrace to GPL and put in Linux and then left in the ditch (though I don't think they'll kill closed-source Solaris).

      I never saw a bright future for open solaris anyway, linux is too far ahead for it to catch up. Not that it isn't a great product, but it was open sourced way too late in the game. Might as well give linux its best parts ...

      Java will take twice as long to evolve, as IBM's bureaucracy will dwarf that of the JCP's. ...
      OpenOffice, right now not the cleanest, most user friendly app, will worsen if Lotus Symphony is anything to go by.

      You're on to something here ... something very frightening.

      IBM pays good lip service to open source, and contributes o some strategic projects (ex Apache Harmony), but their true commitment to open source is much less than that of Sun's. That's what the Linux crowd sometimes fails to understand.

      I agree, but if Sun is going to disa

    • The only reason IBM has been funding and supporting Linux development so strongly is to compete with Solaris, since AIX is so dreadful.

      You can bet your bottom dollar, that when IBM gets its filthy mitts on Solaris, it will drop its Linux development like a hot potato.

      Sun has frittered away all its advantages over the last decade, and despite its genuine commitment to Open Source in general, the PHBs really don't get "community." This is a shame. And why can't they make processors? Fujitsu have always made

    • by geekoid (135745)

      2 billion dollar commitment is a fucking lot. IBM, with all their issues, is a seriously committed player.

    • A few years ago IBM acquired Rational. Immediately afterword they discontinued the popular Visual Test product because it competed with more expensive products IBM owned. They won't sell you a license for it and they won't convert it into an open source project.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by ebh (116526)

        If Rational is any indication, IBM is going to figure out what Sun's cash cows are and hold those customers hostage.

        I've been an enthusiastic ClearCase user and administrator (please let's not start that flamewar again) all the way back to the Atria days. After dealing with IBM as a vendor since they bought Rational, I've seriously considered recommending against ClearCase to my customers.

        It's not just the incompetent and ever-changing bureaucracy, which is indeed infuriating, it's the attitude of their re

    • by mpcooke3 (306161)

      Watch OpenSolaris get pillaged for bits like ZFS and DTrace to GPL and put in Linux and then left in the ditch (though I don't think they'll kill closed-source Solaris).

      So what you are saying is that IBM might use this opportunity to make two really major improvements to Linux. Oh how horrible of them.

  • Pipedream??? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by syousef (465911) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @04:04PM (#27347109) Journal

    I see this story has been tagged "Pipedream". I don't know what kind of pipe people are smoking these days, but to me it doesn't sound like any kind of pleasant or desirable dream to have one company in control of so many things we depend on...even more so during an economic downturn.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      For the most part I don't really understand all the hatred being expressed against IBM. What realistic alternatives are there?

      1. Sun continues its downward spiral into irrelevance and insolvency. Eventually it goes bankrupt and its assets are sold off to the highest bidders.
      Bad for obvious reasons. No one would want to see that.
      2. Sun gets bought out by another company, say HP or Oracle.
      It would be hard to argue that HP or Oracle would be a better owner than IBM, assuming they could even afford it. If Su

  • by Bill_the_Engineer (772575) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @04:06PM (#27347151)

    NetBeans/Eclipse would unify IBM's front against Visual Studio.

    I hope Netbeans don't become the mess that Eclipse is threatening to become. The multiple distributions, the commercial only plugins, UI inconsistencies, and instability.

    I know the Eclipse fanboys will object, but I've used both IDEs and Eclipse has its issues and feels like it was built by a committee consisting of competitors.

    With Netbeans, I don't have to worry about CDT not meshing with the current patched version of the platform, or having to choose between Subclipse or Subversive and trying to get past that stupid Java HL issue with Ubuntu. Netbeans just works.

    Nothing against Eclipse, I just don't want any of that crap to migrate over to Netbeans.

    Then there's IBM history other editors like XyWrite...

    • by $1uck (710826)
      More likely any sort of corporate sponsorship or support for NetBeans would disappear, which would suck.
  • But please not by IBM, they have too many competing products and this will effectively just strip out competition. As fro Glassfish being entry level product for websphere? Huh? its.. WSAD not WHAPPY. I'd like to see Sun paired with a company that has experience with consumers and consumer products like Apple (probably never going to happen). A company where the two could benefit each other not a company that will swallow Sun's product line and make it disappear or merge with its own.
  • "... and NetBeans/Eclipse would unify IBM's front against Visual Studio"

    What do you mean? I didn't know NetBeans and Eclipse were planing on embracing .NET. Certainly .NET developers aren't likely to switch to Java even if they liked NetBeans and Exclipse more than Visual Studio (which they don't).

    Seems that there always has to be an Anti-MS spin no matter how brain-dead.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I'd love to see a C# plugin for NetBeans, personally. NetBeans 6.5 is the first release I'd call almost as good as Visual Studio (I can't stand Eclipse, personally), and there's not much work left to make it a genuine competitor for what I use it for. I'm already looking at moving my C++ development over to it. Having an .NET plugin would seal the deal for me.

      (It can't be any worse than MonoDevelop...)

  • It means IBM is back in our datacenter in the midrange area after we spent years getting rid of those expensive AIX pSeries...
  • Horrible article (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jonboy X (319895) <jonathan.oexnerNO@SPAMalum.wpi.edu> on Thursday March 26, 2009 @04:38PM (#27347685) Journal

    Wow. Just...wow. All IBM gets out of the deal is the Java name. All the other assets are basically bogus, which the market has already figured out.

    1. Glassfish is still pretty much a toy, as far as J2EE app servers go. If users want free, they go with JBoss. If they wanna pay money for scalability and features and support, they already go with IBM's WebSphere.
    2. IDE's don't bring in money for consulting companies. Besides, Eclipse has been the standard for Java development for so long and by such a wide margin that it's barely even a debate except among industry wags. Also...Java IDE's don't compete with Visual Studio. Sheesh!
    3. MySQL is great and all, but if someone's using it, they're probably doing so to *avoid* high consulting and licensing fees.

    InfoWorld hits another high score in tech buzzword bingo, but misses the point completely...

  • SPARC (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Rob Riggs (6418) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @05:06PM (#27348279) Homepage Journal

    I'm more interested in what IBM will do with the SPARC processor and Solaris, and how that affects Fujitsu [fujitsu.com].

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by ggeens (53767)

      If IBM drops SPARC, Fujitsu will probably become the only supplier of Solaris systems. Both the SPARC architecture [opensparc.net] and Solaris [opensolaris.org] are available as open source, so IBM cannot easily prevent that.

      Being open source, it is possible that other companies emerge using those technologies. Don't count on it: if anyone believed in that, this would already have happened.

      I'm also unsure about how much traction Solaris will have without SUN.

  • by thanasakis (225405) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @05:34PM (#27348751)

    Bare with me for a moment.

    Sun is full of PhDs, patents and interesting technologies and I think their corporate culture is much more close to Apple than to IBM. They have a fairly decent server product line with competitive prices, a host of enterprise contracts all over the world and an excellent OSS "server" OS which is still being developed heavily. They have a solid 64-bit RISC architecture coupled with energy efficient multicore processors that give even the best x86 chips a run for their money. Not to mention their storage strategy which is, IMHO, brilliant. ZFS, StorageTek, Lustre, fishworks [sun.com], mysql all fall into a strategy of acquisitions and development that was commenced several years ago. Has it started yielding financial results yet? Arguably not quite. Was it spot-on? Hell yes. Storage has come and it will be big. The bad economic conditions make their financial problems worse, but it's not like they didn't give their best.

    Apple could really use them to buy its way into the Enterprise. They have already ported dtrace and zfs to MacOSX, demonstrating that a lot of technologies can be used outside of Sun products with success. Considering the stockpile of cash they're sitting on, it would not really be a problem for Apple to buy them. With their combined strength (heard that one before, right?) they could really be a dangerous adversary for IBM, HP and Microsoft.

    Well, if that isn't a pipe dream, then what is?

    • by ishobo (160209) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @06:32PM (#27349789)

      There is bad blood between Jobs and McNealy (who is still chairman). I agree though, a merger between Apple and Sun would be better because nothing they have overlaps. Apple picks up enterprise software and hardware, which they clearly lack. They also would get a global services group. Although Sun is not profitable, they have little debt and $2.5 billion on hand.

  • Sun Ray technology (Score:3, Insightful)

    by amirulbahr (1216502) on Thursday March 26, 2009 @06:55PM (#27350115)
    Would be interesting to find out what IBMs plans for Sun Ray are. Desktop virtualisation is an area that Sun excels in at the moment.

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