Saturday, May 24, 2008

Cisco to introduce new messaging protocol

Cisco has developed a new messaging protocol to allow developers to integrate client/server applications without the overhead of traditional protocols such as SOAP. The new protocol, Etch, was introduced at a developer's conference covering the new 2.5 release of the Cisco Unified Application Environment (CUAE).

For project managers starting new work, Etch, which will go into beta release this summer, may offer an attractive alternative to SOAP, CORBA, EJB and other established messaging protocols. Etch promises a distributed application development without the cross-platform headaches that SOAP entails, and with a degree of performance that makes it practical for real-time applications that are chattier than traditional SOA infrastructures are set up for.

Louis Marascio, Director of Engineering for the CUAE platform at Cisco said that when you whittle SOAP down to the intersection of features that are compatibly implemented by the available platforms, the feature set shrinks considerably. Marascio says that Cisco is committed to having 100-percent functional compatibility of all features on all supported languages and platforms.

Cisco also is examining the possibility of establishing Etch as a standard. Marascio pointed out that Cisco is well represented in the IETF, the main standards body for Internet protocols. Alternatively, Cisco might attempt to promote Etch as an industry standard, an effort that would be aided by Etch's open source nature.

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