December 2, 1996 10:00 AM ET

Trilogy enters new chapter
Integrating Marimba's Castanet, Bongo into sales applications

By Jim Kerstetter

  By reaching out to a new World Wide Web publishing technology, Trilogy Development Group customers may be able to upgrade their applications online without stretching their network bandwidth to the breaking point.

Trilogy will announce this week it is integrating Marimba Inc.'s Castanet application distribution technology and its Bongo visual development environment into Trilogy's Selling Chain suite of product configuration and sales software.

The two Java-based applications from Marimba are part of a wider Java initiative on Trilogy's part, said Allan Drummond, director of the Austin, Texas, company's Internet business unit. In the first quarter of next year, Trilogy expects to deliver Version 2.1 of its Selling Chain applications, which will be rewritten completely using the Java programming language.

Drummond said Trilogy has been working with Java for more than a year and is now confident enough in its programming efforts to commit to the language for future Selling Chain development. "This makes our applications cross-platform and very network-centric."

With Castanet, Trilogy hopes it can come to terms with bandwidth. Created by Marimba, of Palo Alto, Calif., Castanet will let users automatically receive updates to Selling Chain over the Internet or intranets via distributed applets, without downloading entire system-snuffing applications.

Chris Smith, an analyst at Norand Corp., in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, said he told Trilogy developers some time ago that Internet solutions could be a godsend for Norand. Norand uses the Selling Chain with its channel partners, and that means software installation and hardware configuration headaches with partners that could be anywhere in the country.

"That all seems to go away in a browser environment," Smith said.

Trilogy also will release the first of several component libraries for Bongo, Marimba's visual tool for designing and implementing GUIs for Java applications. The first library will be designed to help Trilogy users build customized GUIs for SC Config, the Selling Chain application for product configuration. Pricing has yet to be determined.

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