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RIA & Ajax: Article

Web 2.0 in the Enterprise: Who is Person of the Year at Your Company?

Bringing the benefits of Web 2.0 inside your workplace can make "You" (The User) the person of the year

Wikipedia, YouTube, MySpace. Exciting stuff to be sure. Not to mention Flickr, Google Maps, Twitter, Pandora, Last.FM, digg, and the multitudes of other Web 2.0 sites out there. Hard to argue with the idea that these sites are changing the way we interact with technology and the resulting benefits. But one important aspect of this "revolution" that the Time feature fails to point out is that this transformation is currently restricted almost entirely to the consumer space. The benefits of this "world-changing" experience largely disappear as these same users enter their corporate workplace each day and use their business applications.

In the workplace, instead of sharing these next generation Web experiences, users typically find themselves interacting with different siloed software applications that are often poorly integrated with each other and whose UIs do not enable the sort of interactivity, configurability, and customization they desire.

In this world, it might be more accurate to say that the corporate ERP system or the ubiquitous-but-annoying Portal software is 'person' of the year! This is not to disparage the vendors of these software packages (much), but to highlight the fact that change often comes more slowly to the corporate environment and is limited or throttled by these tools.

By now you know well that our goal at JackBe is to bring the benefits of Web 2.0 to the Enterprise and make "You" (The User) the person of the year inside the workplace. Our approach to bringing the benefits of Web 2.0 to the Enterprise is to create the premier Enterprise Mashup Platform (which we call Presto).

At JackBe we believe that Mashups are user-driven, user-focused and ad-hoc in nature. But as we've discussed in the recent past, what differentiates our approach to Mashups from what you'll encounter in the consumer space is an approach that embraces (yet does not displace) existing Enterprise infrastructure and middleware. And as heterogeneous, disparate data sources are the norm, enterprise mashups must meet the need of bringing these hetergenous sources together elegnatly. Finally, I can attest personally that any good Enterprise Mashup Platform must also be built to deploy securely (with the proper governance and access control policies) and safely (with capabilities for high-availability and real-time monitoring).

Remember, we're no longer not talking eye-candy technology to connect restaurant listings with Google maps. We're building solutions to critical, often sensitive, business needs. Serious features for security and safety are unsexy-but-vital capabilities you've got to have in your Enterprise Mashup platform.

If you are a Enterprise Architect in a Fortune 2000 company, these are capabilities to live by. I'll be discussing topics like enterprise mashup security and reliability in great detail in my next few posts. And that's the kind of stuff that would make YOU into Person of the Year in your company.

More Stories By Dan Malks

Dan Malks is Vice President of Application Platform Development at JackBe. He was a contributor to SYS-CON's best-selling 'Real-World AJAX' blockbuster (Chapter 16: Business RIAs: Creating the 'AJAX Bank' Application).

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Please Clarify 01/08/08 10:20:02 AM EST

So is "Enterprise 2.0" the big thing for 2008, or is mashups different?