SD Times 100: 2009

June 12, 2009 — 

Such The Drama

That’s how “2008: An Economic Odyssey” played. The year was filled with images of layoffs, cutbacks, going-out-of-business signs and more. Pundits said the technology sector held up better than most, showing only that “weak” is better than “down” in financial terms. Meanwhile, companies lived quarter to quarter, hoping they didn’t simply fade to black.

To be sure, there were bright spots with the emergence of cloud computing and composite applications. Amazon was the star of that picture, but other platform providers sought billing. For development managers, the line they kept hearing was, “Do more with less.“ Agile development practices played a larger role. And with the move toward services came an increase in the use of open-source software, as companies looked to cut costs and increase time-to-market. This created a market for governance and certification software.

It was the year that most of us found Facebook and learned to tweet on Twitter. These social media sites proved that collaboration is easier than ever. For distributed teams, “development as a service” followed this trend as hosted platforms accessed via a browser emerged and grew.

So here are the companies that led the way to this new software world through their ideas, inventions and new implementations.


          Quality Assurance

The saying goes that the most innovation happens at startups. That may be true, but the long tail is generally wagged by the biggest companies and organizations in our industry. The companies recognized as Influencers in the SD Times 100—whether they’re Apple with the Mac and iPhone, or Microsoft with Windows and Office—have had a profound impact on many, many, many areas of information technology and software development. Their influence is felt everywhere, from the desktop to the Internet, from the laboratory to the business meeting.

  • Apple
  • Eclipse
  • Free Software Foundation
  • IBM Trophy
  • Intel
  • Java Community Process
  • Linux Foundation
  • Microsoft • Oracle
  • OSGi
  • Alliance
  • VMware
Defects happen. No matter how hard your coders try, errors will creep into the software. Not all the faults are programmatic; some defects are caused by architectural issues, the failure of dependencies, or even a misinterpretation of requirements. (And some defects are reported because requirements changed.) Many companies and projects stand ready to help your stakeholders measure, identify and remediate defects in your programs. From makers of individual tools to entire QA sites, the SD Times 100 recognizes leaders and innovators in the software quality-assurance field.

  • DynatraceTrophy
  • Gomez
  • Hex-Rays
  • Hewlett-Packard
  • IBM
  • iTKO
  • McCabe
  • Parasoft

  Application Life-Cycle Mgmt.

          Rich Internet Applications

No two developers—or development tools providers—will ever agree about what’s included within application life-cycle management. How much does ALM focus on an individual developer’s productivity? The team? The organization? The lack of a clear definition hasn’t stopped some of the industry’s most innovative companies from offering tool suites that encompass the entire application life cycle. In some cases, these organizations have demonstrated leadership by creating innovative ALM solutions from the ground up. In other cases, they have led by integrating once-distinct products.

  • AtlassianTrophy
  • CollabNet
  • Electric Cloud
  • IBM
  • Kovair
  • MKS
  • Seapine
  • Serena
  • TechExcel
  • UrbanCode
Hybrids between client/server and Web applications, rich Internet applications combine the power of remote hosts with the performance and resources of locally running code. While there are many approaches to RIAs, the strongest success has come to those industry leaders that have taken a broad, platform-agnostic approach to the problem. This year, the SD Times 100 recognizes three players whose RIA platforms have become the de facto standard. While other RIA platforms fill important needs, they lack the broad appeal of solutions from these companies.

  • AdobeTrophy
  • Microsoft
  • Sun


          Cloud Computing

   Software Configuration Mgmt.

Last year may have been The Year of the Cloud. It was hard to attend any software-development forum (or any information technology event) without seeing the phrase “cloud computing” in 20-foot letters. The economic recession, combined with emerging hardware and software platforms, combined to create a perfect storm. Behind that storm stood three companies, whose names became ubiquitous. While their approaches to cloud computing were different, these companies have gained early momentum. Today, the industry now looks to them for leadership during nascent standardization efforts.

  • AmazonTrophy
  • Google
  • Salesforce
It may not be the sexiest area of software development, but SCM is the bread and butter of application life-cycle management. Without a platform to manage source code, control check-in and check-out, store artifacts, and exercise version control, development projects can’t scale and can’t succeed. Today’s leading SCM platform makers, recognized in this year’s SD Times 100, do even more: They integrate with defect management, requirements management and build systems; provide reports to team leaders and business executives; enable team communication; and foster a culture of quality.

  • GitTrophy
  • Perforce
  • Seapine
  • Sonatype
  • Subversion

           Components & Libraries


Smart software developers like to write software. Smarter software developments—and their managers—know that it’s often better to reuse code than write it from scratch. Code reuse has been the goal of developers from time immemorial, whether it’s grabbing a box of math routines punched onto Hollerith cards or loading a library of GUI widgets. This year, the SD Times 100 recognizes the innovators and leaders in reusable components and libraries, focusing on those companies that have stayed on top of the latest platforms and protocols.

  • AmyuniTrophy
  • Aspose
  • ComponentOne
  • ComponentSource
  • DevExpress
  • Dundas
  • Infragistics
  • Intersoft Solutions
  • /n Software
  • Nevron
  • Software FX
  • Syncfusion
  • Telerik
Nothing ruins your day more than finding that hackers stole your company’s most sensitive data. Unless, perhaps, it’s that someone did something worse. Security vulnerabilities can be introduced at any stage of the application life cycle, perhaps because of simple coding errors, or because sophisticated enemies found and exploited a flaw that you never knew existed. There are many techniques for detecting security vulnerabilities, and the innovative companies recognized in this category have demonstrated that their products and services make a real difference.

  • CoverityTrophy
  • Fortify
  • Klocwork
  • Microsoft
  • Progress
  • SafeNet
  • Selenium
  • Veracode

          Database & Data Tools

           SOA & Middleware

It has become hard to tell where the application server ends and the database server begins. Over the past several years, database servers, which we used to call relational database management systems, have grown in complexity and sophistication while offering new flexibility for scalability and performance. Similarly, database tools have evolved as well. Yesterday’s DBA wouldn’t recognize today’s RDBMS. This year, we recognize those organizations that have led the advancement of database technology through their leadership in servers, developer and DBA tools, and data access technologies.

  • CATrophy
  • Embarcadero
  • Enterprise DB
  • IBM
  • Ingres
  • Microsoft
  • Oracle
  • Red Gate
  • Sybase
Break free of your silos, cry advocates for service-oriented architectures. Extend the usefulness of your applications by tying them together using standards-based middleware, such as those based on the various Web service specifications. By using smart middleware, and by adding Web services to existing or new applications, enterprise software can become smarter as well, and the cost to create new functionality can drop by an order of magnitude. These companies have demonstrated leadership and innovation in the areas of SOA-enablement and in creating enterprise middleware.

  • Active EndpointsTrophy
  • Hewlett-Packard
  • InterSystems
  • iWay
  • Programming Research
  • Rally
  • Tibco
  • WSO2


           Tools & IDEs

You got your peanut butter in my chocolate… and we ended up with a new type of candy. Your developers wanted to add a geographic display of your company’s retail locations to your website, and so they incorporated Google Maps. Development teams have mashed applications together for years, of course, through ad hoc integration of disparate applications and data sources. Service oriented architectures accelerated the trend, making mashups easier to make—and less brittle—than ever before. We recognize three leaders that have taken the concept farther than any others.

  • JackBeTrophy
  • Serena
  • Tibco
What determines developer productivity? While sophisticated platforms are essential for teams, an individual programmer is only as effective as the tools on his or her desktop. Some programmers like to choose a selection of discrete tools, bringing together code editors, compilers, linkers, debuggers, analyzers and makefile utilities. Others like to work in a cutting-edge integrated development environment, preferably one that ties into other enterprise development platforms like SCM systems. The SD Times 100 recognizes these companies and organizations as the leaders in tools and IDEs for enterprise developers.

  • ActiveStateTrophy
  • Altova
  • Black Duck
  • Eclipse
  • Embarcadero
  • Instantiations
  • Jruby
  • Microsoft
  • Sun


          Web Development

The bigger the project, the more important modeling becomes to achieving success. We’ve learned, of course, that modeling can take several forms; while many extol the virtue of the Unified Modeling Language, the most important element in a successful model-driven approach to software development is that developers actually use the models, no matter whether the models are standards-based or not. We recognize four organizations that have demonstrated leadership by advancing the state of modeling in software development, whether through the use of specifications, integration or tool usability.

  • IBM
  • Microsoft
  • Object Management Group
  • Sparx Systems

The process of building websites and Web pages is different, in many ways, from creating traditional client and server applications. Not only is the Web paradigm unique, but Web developers are also often using special languages and protocols. They also have specific issues regarding functional testing and load testing. What’s more, requirements may be vague, agility paramount, and the rollout process abbreviated. These companies and organizations have demonstrated a profound understanding of the needs of enterprise Web developers, and they help developers build Web applications faster than ever before.

  • Adobe
  • Eclipse
  • Google
  • Microsoft
  • Ruby on Rails
  • Sun

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07/22/2009 11:10:54 PM EST

thanks for all.

United Statesmin khaung

02/12/2010 11:00:58 AM EST

Syncfusion needs to removed from any awards listing. We have found many of their WPF controls to be hopelessly buggy to the point of uselessnes, particularly their DateTimeEdit control. Their support department has been good with taking our bug reports and addressing them quickly, only to release a patch that fixes the bug and causes half a dozen new bugs--all of them severe to the point of making the control useless--even dangerous. Until Syncfusion gets their quality control into existence, I would never consider using Syncfusion's component library.

United StatesRuss

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