It’s always easier to understand things if you know how they developed. That’s why we would like to tell you a bit about how we have become what we are now.
It was on the 1st of January in 1985, when it all began, the founding of our small company. At this time the PC still was in its infancy and not really suited for professional needs. It was just a Personal Computer. When it came to professional multi user and multi tasking applications, there was only a choice between the midrange systems, the huge and expensive mainframes and the upcoming Unix-systems based on affordable microprocessor technology.
We decided to go for the latter.
But despite the technological elegance and superiority of Unix, we went against the tide. Unix was known as a rather academic operating system, mostly used in technical and scientific applications, but at this time it was absolutely unusual in industrial and/or commercial contexts.
Is it possible to develop commercial applications based on Unix?
But before we could go on, some basic work had to be done. The academic approach of Unix revealed a lot of loose ends when it came to such basic and essential things like databases, user-interfaces or printing – to name only a few. We just had to make it work for the average user.
And so we began to develop databases, user interfaces and all those essentials we found missing from the Unix operating system. Though it was laborious and strenuous, it took us only a few years and our software development environment Artlib was born. We introduced it to the public in 1987 at the GUUG (German Unix Users Group) conference in Wiesbaden, Germany. This environment – today you would call it a Framework – would accompany us until the late 90’s. But not only us. Other software developers and companies also used it successfully.
Many fascinating projects in different domains were implemented. In the beginning it was mostly industrial, but later, when Unix became more widespread, commercial applications followed.
From Unix, C, C++ to Java
Today, Artlib, C and C++ does not play a major role in our daily work anymore.
In 1993 a serious competitor to Unix appeared on the market: Windows-NT. Shortly after being recognized as an alternative to Unix, a lot of companies tried to port their applications from Unix to NT. The buzzword NT-migration was born and induced what is best described as a hype. However, as with all these IT-hypes, the time of disillusion followed mercilessly and a lot of projects failed. Today, last but not least due to Linux’s impressive road of success, both operating systems live in peaceful coexistence. While Windows dominates the desktop, Unix and Linux are highly recommended solutions for professional servers. To keep up with the changes that we have anticipated since the mid 90’s, we started to look for a new platform independent technology while others still fought the flamewar.
And that’s how we came to Java.
But despite the technological elegance and superiority of Java, we went against the tide. Java was absolutely unusual in industrial and/or commercial contexts.
Is it possible to develop commercial applications based on Java?
But before we could go on, … Stop!
Did anybody hear the bell ringing?
As you might have already guessed, the situation with Java was pretty much the same as with Unix twenty years ago.
And so, we decided to start over and develop all of the things we found missing from the Java platform from the ground up. Though it was hard work, we’re confident that it was well worth the effort. Today, the Java framework Tentackle and the agile code generator Wurbelizer provide a highly effective and sophisticated development environment that leads to high quality software within short time frames. And the best: both are Open Source!