Putting Assets to Work

IBM Haifa develops software to help analysts and developers understand and reuse enterprise-distributed assets

Haifa, Israel - 23 Jun 2002: IBM's Asset Locator took a significant step recently, when it graduated from research project status to become a part of the WebSphere Studio Asset Analyzer for Multi-platforms.

Asset Locator is a comprehensive solution for the management of enterprise software assets -- a module that can examine the structure and content of a certain file type and extract semantic and textual information from it. By incorporating the features offered by IBM Haifa's Asset Locator, WebSphere Studio Asset Analyzer offers customers coverage and impact analysis for distributed artifacts, such as J2EE applications, Java code, XML, HTML, or C++ applications.

WebSphere Studio Asset Analyzer is a tool used for maintaining and extending existing software assets through impact analysis, reuse, and application understanding. It previously offered program understanding and impact analysis coverage for legacy applications that run on mainframe computers, including such assets as COBOL, PL/1, CICS, or Assembler code artifacts. It ultimately helps IBM save enterprise customers' time and resources by providing them with knowledge about how making changes to their existing assets will affect other applications.

"With the heightened complexity of today's enterprise applications, we need to understand the application structure and how code changes will affect other parts of the system," says Avi Yaeli, project leader for Asset Locator. "It is becoming more and more critical to maintain, extend and revamp e-business applications."

Future Plans
The vision of the Asset Locator team is to transform Asset Locator into a more comprehensive software asset management solution, and to make it an integral tool in the development life cycle. Plans for future development of the project include adding support for Web Services, component management, and extending the scope of analysis beyond distributed assets to other domains. The team is also exploring how Asset Locator technology could work with other IBM products and service offerings.

Today, the Asset Locator group is working on a third version of WebSphere Studio Asset Analyzer, and is field-testing its new features. They are currently working with large companies, including Boeing and Schwab, to evaluate the current support and identify new requirements and customer needs. The team is also working with an IGS group that plans to use this technology in new engagements.

"These new management and analysis tools are critical for IBM enterprise customers to properly manage their IT resources in order to survive in today's aggressive marketplace," says Gabi Zodik, manager of the IBM Haifa Programming Languages and Environments department.

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