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An article by Jerry Cuomo (September 2013)
IBM Corporation, firstname.lastname@example.org
Every 12 years or so, there is a renaissance in application development. In the early 2000s the “web boom” sparked an extreme focus on the building of web applications. Now we see another renaissance with the advent of mobile, social, big data and cloud. The application boom has reached unprecedented peaks. People use these apps every day, for everything from making a hotel reservation, to checking bank accounts, to ordering a pizza. And with more than 1.5 million apps available in the Apple App Store and in Google Play, consumers have an almost-unlimited number of options from which to choose.
In previous articles about the industry’s web-app renaissance, I have coined the term “engaging enterprise.” This term describes a style of application that promotes the use of “systems of engagement” to drive new transactions to “systems of record.” This pattern, where interactions drive new transactions, is at the center of the new age of engaging applications. Paypal alone expects more than USD20 billion in mobile transactions in 2013.
IT solutions in the early 2000s better catered to the developer. In the mid-2000s, attention was more diversely focused on catering to a broader set of IT roles. Specifically, the systems- administration function became the prime beneficiary of tech- nology advancements in virtualization and automation. This reality is appropriate, considering the fact that the systems administrator is often the person who is required to manage all the newly built web apps. Today’s “app boom” is shifting the focus back to the developer with movements such as DevOps.
DevOps is a software development method that stresses communication, collaboration and integration between software developers and information technology (IT) professionals. As consumers around the world embrace apps with vigor, DevOps helps create business success because the method is focused on “breaking down the walls” between developers and systems administrators. The method helps to simplify the development process from start to finish. And now we have arrived at the sub- ject of this paper: simplifying development of engaging applications.
The Three Amigos
Looking across the three major compute tiers, three technologies stand out as uncontested leaders when they are identified using Google trend searches. Vibrant development communities form a strong foundation for these technologies and provide an ecosystem for support and custom extensions. I am interested to see that these three technologies are often used together in the creation of engaging mobile applications, and I have begun to call them the “three amigos,” which is Spanish for “the three friends.” These three technologies act as a developer’s three best friends, because the technologies lower the concept count for the act of building mobile apps. The “three amigos” are jQuery, Node.JS (with Google V8) and MongoDB.
Within the IBM Software Group, the motto is “embrace and extend” open source. The “three amigos” are also becoming honorable friends as the Software Group mobilizes our MobileFirst platform. The following picture illustrates the 3 amigos at work across the 3 dominant computing tiers. The figure also shows that the amigos are central in forming IBM's foundation around Mobile, Cloud and BigData by appearing in Worklight, BlueMix and Extreme Scale and DB2.