Oct 02, 2009
Platform as a service is a form of cloud computing that holds considerable potential to help enterprise developers quickly write and test customer- or employee-facing Web applications, something that companies of all stripes will be under growing pressure to deliver. These online development environments come from a range of vendors, including Salesforce.com (Force.com), Microsoft (Azure, starting next month), and startups such as WaveMaker.
These platforms tend to center around one development language or methodology—not a bad thing for enterprise developers, who aren’t looking for just any platform but one that matches their preferences in tools and language, such as .Net, Java, or Ruby on Rails. The platforms promise more efficient coding through automation of tasks such as setting up a newly composed app as a Web service. Most also offer a cloud infrastructure service, or links to vendors such as Amazon.com, so that developers can launch what they build in a cloud infrastructure that can keep up with demand for the new application.