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Saturday, October 14, 2006

SFDC : Soaring Ambitions

Salesforce.com threw open the usage of Apex, a new multi-tenant programming language and platform that enables customers, partners and developers to manipulate the company's code, triggers and stored procedures. When I first heard about this plan of SFDC, I liked the idea instantly.With this, the customers and partners get the opportunity to work on the programming language and platform to create their own custom components. These can be integrated/added to the salesforce’s AppExchange repository. Prior to this release of Apex, custom coding was mostly centered on an external platform, and integrate to salesforce.com through commonly used application programming interface (API) calls The journey ahead is a very long one – SFDC’s ambition of having million applications on its platform from the current status of less than 500 apps says it all. With this the focus now shifts to creating a community of developers/users who can create, customize and extend their applications using the new platform. Clearly, SFDC’s ambition goes beyond providing CRM solutions – almost being your infrastructure service hosting partner of choice. Look at it – the possibilities extend to hosting enterprise applications therein. SFDC has opened this at a time when all major players like Google/Amazon are looking at being a infrastructure player. The concerns that customers may have of using a proprietary language also need to be closely watched. SFDC positions the tool like SQL as a application service, an on-demand operating system and can potentially made huge advances in running applications as a service. All the big guys - from Microsoft to Google to Amazon are moving into the business of being an infrastructure utility. As I see it the 3P’s - Pricing, Promotion and Partnership strength would determine the success of the scheme in the short run. I have no doubt about the medium to long term impact - the scheme looks elegant in that the integration overheads potentially come down and the promise that upgrades shall take care of custom codes built in (if delivered ) make the offering attractive. In a way, this would also help allaying the concerns that on-demand solutions and legacy integration that routinely get talked about – we have the delivery on promise here. .

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
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