Steve Benfield

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Top Stories by Steve Benfield

As the push to Web-based computing gains momentum, the variety of available tools, standards, techniques and languages gets increasingly complex. In implementing a Web strategy, IS managers must make some hard decisions on issues that include: supported browsers, ISP selection, Web server platform and OS, application server platform and OS, object architecture standards, client-side component approach (HTML vs. Java vs. ActiveX), server-side component tools (VB5, C++, PowerBuilder 6, Delphi, Java), security standards, database engine selection, search engine selection, business content creation and more. Enter SilverStream, a new company with a phantom-like image, a star-studded management team, well-tuned development staff and an extremely ambitious vision of what a Web- based development platform should be. The product is also named SilverStream and we saw it for... (more)

Web Services The Power to Change the World?

So, people keep asking me, "Steve, how come you are such a wild and crazy guy?" OK, sorry, a late 70s flashback there. No, they ask me, "Steve, what's your take on Web Services?" To that, I have a standard opening: There is nothing special about Web Services. Web Services will change the world. The reason I use this opening set of remarks is because before I did, I'd get one of the following reactions when getting into a conversation about Web Services: Web Services? No thanks, I already have enough contractors. Web Services is revolutionary. Are you ready to unleash a force of... (more)

Beyond BPM: Using Goal-Seeking Agents to Tackle Highly-Complex SOA Applications

Solving complexity has been a continuing goal of application architects & developers since we started writing programs. While SOA techniques do a great job at standardizing the interface between systems and BPEL attempts to standardize the logic flow between services, they tend to break down when systems become overly complex and uncertainty is introduced into the system. An Agent-Oriented Goal-Seeking approach to building applications has been shown to reduce the complexity of building major real-world applications and to reduce total development time by up to 75%. Goal-seeking ... (more)

JSF: The Ultimate in Flexibility? Or Complexity?

I have a love/hate relationship with J2EE. I love the idea of standards that we can all use in our development to improve interoperability, ease integration issues, create a pool of skilled developers, etc. I hate the idea that I have to wait years for the standards to evolve and become usable. And I hate having specs that seem to work well in theory but have no practical implementation behind them. This brings me to the JSF specification. How long have we heard about JSF (JavaServer Faces) and how it will make it easier to build Web pages? Why did it take more than two and a half... (more)

Development Tools for All

Read JDJ's 2004 Predictions by i-Technology Leaders Feature Story Read The End of Middleware by Jonathan Schwartz Read Offshore Outsourcing by Jack Martin My dad is a DBA. However, he doesn't design large databases, he doesn't write extremely elaborate multiselect SQLs (I don't think he's ever read a Joe Celko book), and he certainly doesn't care about the latest, greatest news in the world of technology. He's been at the same place for about 15 years , is respected by his co-workers, and makes sure that the rest of his organization gets the information necessary to get their job... (more)