The Register Columnists

Martin Banks

Contact Mail Follow RSS feed

Editors' Farewell

Well, from the start of October, we hand over Reg Developer to Gavin Clarke, who's a Register employee (we were freelance) and works from California, where he sits at the development tools coalface and gets first crack at the news. Be kind to him. It's been fun; we have immense respect for the team writing we built up for Reg …
Second Life

IBM virtual strike goes ahead in Sadville

IBM's Italian workforce is set to strike in Second Life tomorrow (27 September). Organised by the UNI union, staff aim to hit the company’s virtual islands, as well as putting real life protesters on picket line duty outside its Italian facilities. Although Sadville is, well, mainly sad, the virtual islands are being heavily …
Martin Banks, 26 Sep 2007
HP

Procurve goes for the core

HP declared its intention to fight a long war against Cisco today, when it unwrapped its 8200zl series core switch units and promise a lifetime hardware warranty on the new kit. HP’s networking operation, Procurve has been well-established as a edge switch supplier for some time, holding a grip on second place to Cisco in the …
Martin Banks, 10 Sep 2007
Second Life

IBM faces Second Life strike

Ever wanted to go on strike, be part of that feeling of solidarity on the picket line, but felt too cowardly to take the risk? September should see just the opportunity for you. That is when Rappresentanza Sindacale Unitaria IBM Vimercate (RSU), the official trade union representing IBM's 9,000 workers in Italy, is planning a …
Martin Banks, 24 Aug 2007
Eclipse teaser (lrg)

Bricklaying with Buckminster

While the basic ideas behind Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) are very attractive to both IT and business managements, and many vendors have come up with technologies and components that play important parts in gluing it all together, there is still the issue of building applications and services in an easy and timely fashion …
Martin Banks, 19 Aug 2007
Redhat logo

Red Hat integrates Exadel and JBoss

Red Hat has got out its soldering iron and brought together the tools that were contributed to it by Exadel back in March with the JBoss Enterprise Application Platform to create a newly branded, Eclipse-based integrated development environment called Red Hat Developer Studio. The Exadel tools: Studio Pro, RichFaces, and …
Martin Banks, 15 Aug 2007
The Register breaking news

So you wanna program games?

Editors' Blog If computer game development is your thing, save your pennies and get yourself over to the Los Angeles Convention Centre. From 18-21 October, the Game Developers Conference is being held in association with the Entertainment for All (E for All) exhibition. Billed as a game career seminar, the conference will give attendees the …
Martin Banks, 10 Aug 2007
The Register breaking news

Mingling requirements

More moves are in train to bring Requirements Management (RM) out of its fusty corner of esoteric technical argument and into the mainstream of applications development planning. Indeed, the whole area of Applications Lifecycle Management (ALM) is a hive of activity as new tools start to appear, and the arrival of Mingle, the …
Martin Banks, 03 Aug 2007
The Register breaking news

Unisys gets a first

I feel strangely sorry for Unisys, even though it has just won a race that is, arguably, well worth crowing about. But you see, it is the first company to run the new TPC-E benchmark that replaces the aged and venerable – and to be honest somewhat discredited – TPC-C benchmark. It is, together with its partner in the process, …
Martin Banks, 25 Jul 2007

Liferay and ICEsoft team up to take Ajax to the enterprise

Building mashups is all very well, but the bigger the organisation requiring them the more complicated it can get to create them, particularly if there is a strong need to maintain enterprise programming models. This is the target of a technology collaboration that brings together Liferay and ICEfaces to create a combined set …
Martin Banks, 25 Jul 2007
The Register breaking news

Wiki tool makes adding services easy

"Service-orientation" often assumes the status of being something very grand and, well, expensive, but that is not always the case. Take the latest iteration of the MindTouch tool, Deki Wiki, which allows users to integrate external services as and when required. Known, for some reason, as Deki Wiki "Hayes", the new version is …
Martin Banks, 25 Jul 2007
The Register breaking news

Web 2.0 shows its data muscle

Mashups are, of course, the "new black" in the world of web services, but building them does mean getting access to data on different databases and services - and that can sometimes be a bit of a problem. So a web server that is aimed at making that task a great deal easier may be worth a look. That is one of the main claims …
Martin Banks, 18 Jul 2007
Warning: aircraft

Pilots get electronic flight bag

Considering the technical complexity of modern commercial aircraft and the operational complexities of running any airline service, it may seem surprising - especially to anyone steeped in the ways of business and/or operational automation - to consider the level to which a commitment to paper is maintained. Most of the …
Martin Banks, 17 Jul 2007
Warning Stop

Stopping integration as an 'accident'

Look at any schematic diagram of the integration needed to ensure good communications between different collaborating applications and you instantly see the meaning behind the phrase "accidental architecture". Add in the complexities inherent with the introduction of SOA environments, however, where a large number of …
Martin Banks, 12 Jul 2007
The Register breaking news

Managing mashed content

For most businesses, large or small, the most common approach to providing content management is to use a shared F: drive across the network. This is despite the fact that there are many content management tools available on the market. One of the reasons, according to John Newton, chief technology officer of Alfresco, is the …
Martin Banks, 10 Jul 2007
Netsuite logo

NetSuite goes for IPO

The long-rumoured and speculated Initial Public Offering (IPO) by Netsuite, the software as a service (SaaS) specialist, is at last underway. and it looks like it will use a novel way to determine the share price and the volume of shares to be issued. The company has taken the first step in the IPO process by filling out a Form …
Martin Banks, 02 Jul 2007
Warning: two way

Facing up to parallelism

It is, perhaps, one of those forgotten facts that computing is still a relatively young technology, made all the more poignant by the realisation that many of the people driving the High Performance Computing (HPC) business, like Burton Smith, Microsoft's technical fellow in charge of advanced strategies and policies for the …
Martin Banks, 02 Jul 2007
globalisation

HPC bar goes lower and wider

The more things stay the same, the more things are likely to change, and clear evidence of that could be seen today at the announcement of the latest Top500 Supercomputers league tables at the International Supercomputer Conference in Dresden. The tables, compiled every six months, show the fastest-performing systems installed …
Martin Banks, 27 Jun 2007
The Register breaking news

Designed to pay twice

Editor's blog Here are some thoughts on user-interface design and the simple psychology of rooking the user. Try this for an example: I have been staying at a hotel where there is Wi-Fi available in the form of a T-Mobile hotspot. Let’s not go to the length of criticising the hotel for not fronting this service itself, putting the cost on the …
Martin Banks, 27 Jun 2007
The Register breaking news

Don’t play whack the gopher

Who would have thought that some 50 people, from CIOs to developers, would feel strongly enough about anything to do with business to turn up at 7.30am in a London hotel, just to suffer a seminar. But that is what they did to witness a presentation by Luke Barrett, a senior analyst at Thoughtworks. What was even more perverse …
Martin Banks, 25 Jun 2007
Netsuite logo

NetSuite pitches at being easy

More evidence that the nature of applications development is changing has come with the announcement of the latest version of NetSuite's SaaS (Software as a Service) offerings, which take some significant steps along the road to bridging the gap between business users and applications development. It also marks a point where …
Martin Banks, 21 Jun 2007
The Register breaking news

APS aims at 'Windows' of SaaS

In much the same way that applications have, in the past, been developed to run on a known operating system – with Microsoft’s Windows being the not the least significant target example – so it is time for the same approach to start appearing at the next level of abstraction. This is the service provider level, which is going …
Martin Banks, 19 Jun 2007
Warning: train

Compuware makes Optimal delivery

As businesses get bigger, the problems surrounding applications delivery get more complex, while the tools designed to service them aim to become more comprehensive and integrated. That is what has happened with Compuware's Optimal suite of tools, the latest release of which is now geared around a new delivery management …
Martin Banks, 15 Jun 2007
The Register breaking news

It's business not technology

Editor's blog A recent chat with Peter Dragunas, HP's director of network domain solutions, has highlighted the way business models are now assuming greater importance than technology in the development of service-based environments. His own area of responsibility, HP's telecommunications service provider customers, are proving to be a good …
Martin Banks, 13 Jun 2007
Apple

Collabnet does Subversion for Mac

It would not be too surprising if fans of Apple's Macintosh felt that, outside of those market sectors where the machine is the platform of choice, they are second class citizens. Mac implementations of PC software often appear many months after the PC versions, if at all, and in the world of developer tools things are little …
Martin Banks, 12 Jun 2007