Love it or hate it—and SD Times readers do both—there’s no denying that Microsoft sets much of the dev world’s agenda. From new SQL Server and Team System tools to the soap opera of Windows Vista, everyone hangs on Microsoft’s latest news, trials and tribulations.

Apache Foundation:
Essential open-source projects, from Ant to Tomcat, live and breathe at Apache; newcomers Beehive and Geronimo have gained significant attention from enterprise developers and software companies alike.

Eclipse Foundation:
With the world at its feet, the foundation has conquered all that is not .NET. Plug-ins and projects pushed this programmers’ paradise toward perfection.

Free Software Foundation:
For years the GPL lay dormant yet virulent. Proposed revisions to the free-as-in-speech license may turn virus into patent carnivore.

Big Blue spins up the dev tools with new Atlantic software development platform, and spins out open-source projects to the broad community.

Jesse James Garrett:
AJAX essay takes world by storm. While interactive Web pages aren’t new, Garrett defines a standards-based approach that reinvents the Web.

Who’s buying whom? Larry Ellison’s big ego, deep pockets and dogged persistence show the Oracle how to grow through acquisition of competitors. Everyone asks, “Who’s next?”

Publish/subscribe for the Web means more than streaming news feeds and blogs; it’s the engine for fueling programmatic app-to-app communications. Now, which standard to use?
It’s not just CRM anymore. When he’s not offending the Dalai Lama, Marc Benioff is the giant poster boy for software as a service, now with app servers too!

State of Massachusetts:
Boston government throws Microsoft’s proprietary document schemas into the harbor in favor of OpenDocument and PDFs. No taxation without standardization!

Embattled on all fronts, the company fights back by giving everything away. From Solaris to NetBeans to its SPARC designs, Sun places all its eggs into a services basket.

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