IBM Lets us all hear the Jazz!

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Strongback Consulting

Great news from IBM. They are opening up the Jazz.net site to all, whereas it was only available to IBMers and key partners. I’ve seen this at the JavaOne conference the past two years, and both times I saw it, I was awed.

Jazz is a project invented by IBM Rational that is similar to Eclipse. Jazz is a development platform built with (or on top of) Eclipse that integrates collaboration and workflow into the application development cycle. In particular, Jazz has this in-context collaboration feature where by a developer can IM another based on the latter’s source code. They call also be notified in real-time whenever another developer makes a change to their source code. The demo I saw at JavaOne showed developers opening and closing bug reports in ClearQuest through the source code, and then having a team chat with video through the IDE, which was initiated from within the source code editor.

This type of development is where the industry is going – its where it has to go in order to have better quality code in shorter amounts of time.

Another add-on that I saw at the Rational Conference last June was one for requirements management. Long gone is the clunky interface and Word integration of Requisite Pro. Rather this was a wiki-like interface for gathering, prioritizing, and completing application requirements. It is all web based. Each requirement was traceable to the source code (once written). The example I saw had an image of a whiteboard drawing as an artifact of the use case. I love this type of thought. Why spend 10 hours perfecting a Visio diagram of a whiteboard you’ve already drawn? You only need enough information to convey the diagram to the developer, and a JPG image is just that…enough.

Anyhow…like Eclipse, IBM intends to have Jazz as open source, while they sell their own products built on top of it. They showed their intended product Rational Team Concert at the Rational Dev. Conference. Jazz will be the underlying platform that everything else will build upon just as Eclipse is the platform for the IDE.

Here’s a link to the article where I found it.

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