As part of its latest SOA swathe of announcements, I was struck by the details…
…on the IBM Legacy Transformation Services, targeted at addressing legacy transformation and integration challenges, particularly within an overall SOA strategy. This has led me to wonder about the extent to which ‘old IBM’ is coming back.
This service makes a big feature out of providing a single-vendor solution. This is despite the fact that legacy integration is an area where IBM partners tend to offer far superior products, at least for older levels of mainframe software like CICS and IMS. There was a time when IBM Global Services used to concentrate on doing the best job for the customer, regardless of the supplier. IBM technologies for legacy integration tend to be generalized, and rather messy and complex compared to the smooth, intuitive and specialized solutions from others such as NEON Software (now part of Sonic), Seagull and GT Software. I have seen GT Software’s Ivory in action, for example, and it is remarkably intuitive and streets ahead of the IBM offerings.
I hope this is just a blip. IBM has vast experience, particularly in SOA where it has dealt with many engagements, and it therefore has a tremendous amount to offer in planning, guidance, management and governance services. It would be a real shame if this was compromised by a limitation to only using IBM’s own tools.