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Software // Information Management

In Brief

Storage on the Grid; dBASE: Back in Action?; SAP and HP Team for Midsized Companies; Gartner to App Vendors: Go a la Carte

Storage on the Grid.

Grid storage, an idea that resembles grid computing, is popping up in multiple product lines — or at least in their marketing line. It's an idea that's not ready to deploy in a large enterprise or outside the data center yet, but analysts predict this type of architecture will eventually serve heterogeneous WAN environments through a single interface. Grid storage increases (without system disruption) in processing power along with growth in storage capacity.

dBASE: Back in Action?

dBASE, which bought the once-dominant dBASE database program from Borland in 1999, changed its name to dataBased Intelligence in August to prepare for its new identity as a BI company. Now it has released dQuery, which lets desktop users connect to "practically any type of database ... without forcing IT departments to write new code," according to CMP TechWeb. The dBASE .dbf data format is still supported by major databases. Users send queries to remote data sources and use a drag-and-drop interface to analyze the data. At $795 with no guided analytics, this is likeliest to appeal to competent analysts impatient with a backlogged IT department — not the average Joe.

SAP and HP Team for Midsized Companies.

In an effort to make SAP applications more accessible to the midmarket, SAP has teamed with HP to host apps configured for various verticals. SAP will provide software, implementation services, maintenance, end-user training, support, functional management, and application management. HP will provide the data center and services that include operations, infrastructure hosting, storage on demand, business recovery, managed Web solutions, and security services. Customers finance software licenses through SAP and pay for maintenance and service monthly. Cost is at least $325 per user per month.

Gartner to App Vendors: Go a la Carte.

Enterprise customers want software providers to break their packages up into smaller pieces, researchers at Gartner say. Big bang software implementations are too hard to change, making them inappropriate for a rapidly changing business world. Businesses also want the pieces to be open so that they can achieve a best-of-breed approach.

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