‘Shoot-Out’ Shows Promise of Architecture Replacement Over Screen Scraping
December 6, 2011 Alex Woodie
What could be faster than screen scraping? According to development tool maker mrc, which participated in the recent “Application Modernisation Shoot Out” in the U.K., it was able to completely re-architect a system in less time than it would have taken to simply screen scrape a green-screen app into a GUI.
Mrc was one of six vendors participating in the Shoot Out, which was hosted last month at the COMMON GB event put on by National iSystems User Group (NiSUG). Each of the six vendors–including Attachmate, CoralTree, Utilties400, SpaceTec , and Logicmate–used a different approach to achieve the goal, which was to modernize as many screens and add as much functionality as possible to a tired old 5250 system, in 30 hours.
While most of the vendors chose an approach based on screen scraping, mrc bit off a bit more: it would try to completely modernize the application’s architecture with a new n-tier system, based on Java servlets, using its mPower tool.
According to mrc, it managed to complete a larger percentage of the original app in the provided timeframe than any of the other competitors. It also was able to add a mobile interface, a Web pivot table and other reports, and separate intranet and extranet systems.
Steve Bradshaw, the moderator of the Shoot Out, called mrc’s results “excellent. mrc’s tool goes beyond simple application modernization. It allows the user to take their existing application, add function, business logic and integration with other systems, then present the unified result in a single graphical interface.”
For more information on the Application Modernisation Shoot Out, see NiSUG’s website at www.nisug.org/nisug/index.php.