Profound Goes GA with i OS-based Web Portal, Atrium
January 12, 2010 Alex Woodie
Profound Logic‘s Atrium is now in the building. Last week the i OS toolmaker announced the general availability of the new Web portal, which provides a single repository where users can access all of their Web-enabled or modernized green-screen i OS applications. The product, which was first introduced in early 2009 at the COMMON conference in Nevada, also gained new functionality from the beta release in the area of macros.
Atrium is an i OS application portal that runs within a Web browser and provides centralized access to Web-enabled applications. The software is all about speed and safety: The speed to get users to the application they need quickly, and the safety to make sure proper security protocols are followed.
Atrium works with Web-enabled applications that have been built using Profound’s RPGSP or Genie tools as well as any other Web framework, the company says. That openness to support other Web frameworks is new; the portal only worked with Profound Web-enablement tools when the beta launched nearly a year ago.
When logged in to Atrium, users are presented with a unique menu system that provides access to all of the applications they are authorized to use. Application access can be set up to correspond with existing i OS user profile settings, or based on custom access settings administrators set up and maintain within Atrium.
This centralization of access provides a greater degree of security. It also brings advantages akin to single sign-on, because users don’t need to repeatedly log in when accessing different applications, Profound says.
The flip side of security is speed, and Profound is excited to talk about Atrium’s features, such as the navigation menu and tab-based access to application screens.
“Green-screen applications require users to navigate through several screens or maintain multiple open sessions on your desktop just to access different sections of your application,” David Russo, Profound’s project lead, says in a press release. “With Atrium, we eliminate all of the extra steps, and allow users to access multiple screens from one single interface without any difficulty.”
Atrium uses Web 2.0-style navigation components, including drop-down trees, “accordion” panels, pull-down menus, and toolbars. The navigation bar is fully customizable by the administrator, and always visible on the left side of the screen (see Figure A).
While Atrium does not work with 5250 green screens, it does break apart the monolithic mold of the menu system, and allows System i shops to create their own menu systems for applications that have been Web enabled. (For companies that don’t have the time for a big modernization project, Profound offers its Genie on-the-fly modernization tool, which uses predefined “skins” to quickly turn 5250 screens into Web interfaces.)
With this GA release, Profound has added support for macros, which will further speed users’ capability to accomplish work within applications. Macros are critical elements of any terminal emulator. But step outside the green walls of the emulators, and it’s a whole different ball game. The addition of macros should help to smooth users’ transition from green-screen applications accessed through emulators to Web-based applications accessed through a Web browser–or an i OS-focused portal, like Atrium, running within a Web browser.
Profound will be hosting a Webinar on Atrium called “Integrate Your Modernization Efforts on the IBM i with Atrium” on January 27 at 1 p.m. ET. Interested parties can register at www2.gotomeeting.com/register/416330218.
Atirum works with all major browsers, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Chrome, and Opera. Customers only have to pay maintenance fees to obtain the software. For more information, visit www.profoundlogic.com.