Seagull Swoops Back Into i OS
November 18, 2008 Alex Woodie
Seagull Software took a look back at its System i roots, and decided that it’s still a good place to be. As a result, you can expect to hear more System i-related news from Seagull, including a new integration workbench that plugs into the Eclipse framework that will be launched in the months ahead, according to the company.
“We’ve ignored the iSeries market for all kinds of good and bad reasons,” Ardy Franssen, Seagull’s vice president of product management, told IT Jungle in a recent in interview. “Since we were acquired by Rocket, we have not given the AS/400 as much attention as mainframe or Unix.”
The fact that Seagull drifted away from what is now known as the IBM i platform is not surprising. Plenty of IT vendors doing business in the IBM host arena will concentrate on one platform more than another. Many of Seagull’s competitors in the emulation and host integration business, with few exceptions, have also basically stopped talking about the i OS server altogether.
What is unusual in this case is that Seagull recognized that it wasn’t a strategically good move to abandon the platform (or at least stop new development), and changed its course as a result. “Contrary to what IBM is thinking, we think the AS/400 is strong still,” Franssen said.
Seagull recently started selling a reporting tool for its integration suite, called LegaSuite Reporting, that can be used by OS/400, i5/OS, and IBM i shops–in particular the large group customers and ISVs who use Seagull’s JWalk screen modernization software.
There will be more new IBM i OS products from Seagull in the future, including a new plug-in for LegaSuite that enables developers to tap into the product’s programmatic integration capabilities directly from the Eclipse IDE.
And Franssen and Seagull will be traveling the world to get the word out to the IBM i faithful that Seagull is back in the AS/400 business. “We’re definitely back at COMMON and the AS/400 user groups again,” she says.