Putting XML in the fast lane

An article at c|net's on "binarizing" XML. Where's ASN.1 when we need it?  OK, OK.... so, maybe NOT ASN.1.  But please think of something that works and doesn't require 5 years to make it into the market.

Sun and others work on specs for binary XML - CNET

Yet Another Blog...

It's nice to see that Steve Adelman has started to 'blog.

....If you've stumbled across this blog by accident (and not via, here's a little information about Nexus Partners - Nexus Partners is a strategy consulting firm in Silicon Valley, we help clients  with growth strategies, new initiatives and partnerships.  ....

A bit about me (there's more under "About"), besides being the founding manager of Nexus Partners.   I've been in Silicon Valley for about seven years, before that lived in and around New York City, the Middle East, and am originally from Bucks County, Pennsylvania.  I've got a wonderful wife and two fantastic kids.

[Notes from the Nexus]


Oded Noy: PATH Application Manager

While riding on the train, I'm catching up with various blogs, including Jon Udell's. As we move into an age of self-aware or autonomic applications, programs like P.A.M. become pretty interesting.  Why use it as a one-time diagnostic?  Why not make a "permanent" probe that then allows something like PAM to make decisions about infrastructure requirements, resource adjustments, etc. in near realtime?  And then, why not use an open standard for communicating with infrastructure -- like WS-RF -- as the means by which the "self-aware" application reaches down into the infrastructure to get what it needs?

Just some of those random thoughts while riding on the train ...

PATH Application Manager Today's screencast features Oded Noy, CTO of PATH Communications, who demonstrates the PATH Application Manager (P.A.M) -- a tool that instruments and analyzes the behavior of large Java (or C/C++) applications. The label most folks would attach to this product is application performance management, but Oded favors the term application behavior management. The demo begins with an explanation of how P.A.M. injects its instrumentation into your code, and then shows how to correlate observed problems ("the application is running slowly") with underlying causes ("somebody is calling 382 database queries per second").

As you'll see, the tool creates common ground between the operations team who will notice problems, and the development team who will solve them. In the emerging world of composite applications that rely on local or remote components and services, this cross-disciplinary style becomes increasingly vital.

Another interesting aspect of our discussion revolves around pattern recognition. In the realm of source code analysis (see our recent feature on the topic), the patterns of interest are textual and the analysis is syntactic. With P.A.M, patterns are temporal and analysis happens in the frequency domain. The technique, Oded explains, was inspired by the seismological background of PATH Communications' director of technology, Jason McBride.



New Spec Could Put RFID Into Action

I know that I'm less tuned in to RFID these days, but I can't help but think that efforts like the one just announced by EPCglobal will make a big difference in the short-term uptake and viability of RFID.

EPCglobal hopes to finally propel radio-frequency identification from pilot status to wide-scale deployment with a new interoperability specification.


A Peek Under Microsoft's Secret 'Bigtop'

Mary Jo Foley has an interesting article about Microsoft's skunkworks Grid project on eWeek.

Microsoft officials have said little about the company's intentions in the grid-computing space. But that doesn't mean Microsoft is ignoring the evolving arena of grid/distributed computing.

Microsoft is working on a skunk-works project that is code-named Bigtop, which is designed to allow developers to create a set of loosely coupled, distributed operating-systems components in a relatively rapid way, according to sources close to the company, who requested anonymity.

Rather than attempting to tightly couple a few high-performance systems together, Microsoft is looking at the consequences of loosely coupling a larger number of moderately powerful computers to achieve a similar result.

Bigtop's first commercial manifestation will likely be as some kind of large-scale project, most likely a distributed grid-computing operating system, the sources added.  ...