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Compuware too cool for quality tools?

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Computware, the mainframe software house, appears to be narrowing its focus on development tools following a hip marketing makeover.

President and chief operating officer Bob Paul used a carefully scripted video presentation that announced "Compuware 2.0" to say the company's Q&A tools face "sustained and fierce" competition.

Accordingly, Paul indicated that Compuware will reserve geographical and product focus for areas where the company is strong. It will avoid going "head to head" against entrenched competition.

Like elsewhere in his presentation Paul didn't specify names or provide helpful details, but you can take competition to mean IBM, Hewlett-Packard - thanks to its ownership of the former Mercury Interactive - Microsoft, and open source tools based on Eclipse. Compuware is a member of Eclipse.

According to Paul, Compuware will invest in Q&A tools "as appropriate" to deliver value to customers and achieve a return on investment.

Compuware products in the clear are Vantage for monitoring, Changepoint for management, and mainframe offerings.

Vantage is a "key component" in Compuware's growth strategy, Paul said. Changepoint will see investment in integration with other Compuware products, while mainframe offerings will see change in pricing and packaging.

Compuware disclosed the information and make over during its fourth-quarter and full-year results late last week. You can read the results here.

Interestingly for a "Web 2.0" based launch there was no talk of blogs, wikis or social networks. Also, Compuware's fallen back on an overplayed "rock" metaphor for it's new tagline - "We make IT rock around the world". There are plenty of moving pictures, though. ®

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