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PLATINUM technology joins 28 organizations to establish the OPEN Object Alliance, which will create an open meta-model for object-oriented tools; consortium of 15 software companies, 3 corporations, and 10 methodologists will propose critical standards to the Object Management Group.

OAKBROOK TERRACE, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 18, 1996-- PLATINUM technology, inc. today announced the formation of the OPEN Object Alliance, a consortium of software development vendors, corporations using object technology, and leading methodologists. This is the industry's first multi-vendor alliance that will develop an open meta-model for object-oriented analysis, design, and construction tools, and a mechanism for sharing data between different tools. These open standards will be submitted to the Object Management Group (OMG) for inclusion in their Object Analysis and Design Facility specification.

Responding to OMG's Request for Proposal

OMG issued a request for proposal earlier this year in an attempt to standardize an architecture for object-oriented tool interoperability. A secondary part of the request seeks to define a core set of standard object-oriented analysis and design (OOAD) methodologies or notations. Specifications developed by the OPEN Object Alliance will support all of the leading OOAD notations that are popular today, including: Booch, Class Relation, Coad, Fusion, Martin/Odell, MOSES, OMT, Responsibility-Driven Development (RDD), Shlaer/Mellor, and SOMA. Two newly proposed international notations, the Unified Modeling Language (UML) and the OPEN Modeling Language (OML), will also be supported.

"Standards developed by the Alliance will represent the majority opinion of the entire object technology and component-based development community, including vendors, methodologists, and end-users," said Erick Rivas, vice president and chief architect of PLATINUM's Paradigm Plus. "These open, standard protocols will allow for true interoperability between different tools and methodologies used at every phase of development -- eliminating the challenging `lock-in' that users experience when they select one tool or methodology."

"For example, a developer could use a reverse engineering tool from one vendor, which would produce a design model," said Rebecca Wirfs-Brock, director, applied object technology, ParcPlace-Digitalk. "With an open standard in place, this design model could be read by other OOAD modeling tools and support a variety of 3GL and 4GL construction tools. With open standards, developers will be able to choose the tools and techniques that they are most comfortable with, while concentrating their efforts on the rapid delivery of a quality application."

Significant Industry Participation

Founding members of the Alliance include:

Corporations -- Centre for Object Technology Applications and Research, The MITRE Corporation, and Swissbank.

Software Companies -- ATA, Genesis Development Corporation, i-Logix, Integrated Systems, Intellicorp, Intersolv, ObjectFocus, Object International, ObjecTime, ParcPlace-Digitalk, PLATINUM technology, Predicate Logic, Ptech, Softeam, Vayda Consulting, and Zotech.

Methodologists -- Colin Atkinson, Peter Coad, Derek Coleman, Philippe Desfray, Donald Firesmith, Ian Graham, Brian Henderson-Sellers, Meilir Page-Jones, Ed Swanstrom, and Rebecca Wirfs-Brock.

All these corporations and methodologists are leaders in object technology.

The multi-vendor backed submission to OMG's Object Analysis and Design Facility specification will integrate the following technologies:

- The CASE Data Interchange Format (CDIF) integrated meta-model, covering many important parts of software engineering techniques in fine detail, but completely method and vendor neutral;

- The Common Object Methodology Meta-model Architecture (COMMA) design methodologies, including Booch, OMT, RDD, MOSES, SOMA, Martin/Odell, BON, Fusion, OOSE, Coad, Shlaer/Mellor, Firesmith, OBA, and ROOM;

- A formal definition of the meta-modeling technique, based on the CDIF meta-model, which allows for extensibility of the meta-model on the fly, and mappings into distributed object technologies such as OMG's Common Object Request Broker Architecture (CORBA); and

- Meta-model extensions from participating OOAD tool vendors.

The result of the work will be an integrated, vendor and method neutral, extensible, multi-faceted, core meta-model -- based on a formal architecture, plus mappings from that meta-model into CORBA/IDL and ActiveX bindings. In other words, a complete specification for the interface a tool must have to provide this unprecedented interoperability.

"Model integration used to be virtually impossible due to the wide range of standard and proprietary software engineering methodologies employed, and the lack of protocols for cooperation between tools," said Johannes Ernst, Integrated Systems Inc. and CDIF vice chair, technical. "This has made software development enormously expensive, especially for large and complex projects where there is `no one true way' for each phase of a project. Now that distributed object technology has matured, it is possible to integrate these independent technologies to mix and match best of breed approaches."

The Alliance expects to submit the specifications to the OMG for standardization within their Object Analysis and Design Facility by the end of 1996. Implementations of the technology will be available in 1997. Parties interested in joining the Alliance should send email to rivas@platinum.com.

PLATINUM technology, inc., delivers the payoff on information technology (IT) investments by providing tools that enable organizations to efficiently manage next-generation computing solutions while leveraging existing and legacy systems. The company provides application development, business intelligence, database administration, data warehousing, and systems management software solutions for the Open Enterprise Environment (OEE) -- the networked computing environment that incorporates mainframe, desktop, and open systems.

All PLATINUM product names and product category names are trademarks of PLATINUM technology, inc. Other company names and product names referenced herein may be trademarks or registered trademarks of the respective corporation.

Additional information on PLATINUM technology, inc. is available on the World Wide Web at http://www.platinum.com.

Editor's Note: There is an "at" symbol after "rivas," "greeley," "kathy.madison," and "braxton" in the E-mail addresses. This symbol may not appear properly in some systems.

CONTACT: Editors: PLATINUM technology, inc.

Michael Greeley, 630/620-5000, ext. 7063

greeley@platinum.com

or

Copithorne & Bellows

Kathy Madison, 617/450-4300

kathy.madison@cbpr.com

or

PLATINUM technology, inc.

Kimberly Braxton, 630/620-5000, ext. 1967

braxton@platinum.com
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Date:Sep 18, 1996
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