Lotus Software Group last week stunned its users when it pulled a key piece of technology from the forthcoming release of Domino, igniting a user backlash that questioned the future of the product as a Web-based development platform.
After Lotusphere attendees warmed to Lotus's plans for Domino to become a set of collaboration components that run on Java 2 Enterprise Edition, they were fed a bitter pill when Lotus pulled key Java technology, called Garnet, from the forthcoming Domino 6.
Garnet, under development for more than a year, supplied support for Java Server Pages (JSP) in Domino. Support for JSP, a simple programming mechanism for displaying dynamic content on a Web page, was to provide a bridge into the J2EE development world without having to purchase and deploy a full-blown J2EE server, such as IBM's WebSphere.
"This would have made Domino even more viable as an all-in-one integrated platform', and it would have been coherent and low-cost compared to classic' J2EE solutions involving WebSphere and DB2 which require many different people and skills," said Web developer Pejman Parandi.
But IBM is no longer interested in an all-in-one platform, said Parandi, and it killed Garnet to avoid competing with J2EE support on WebSphere.
Garnet, which is in the current beta versions of Domino 6, isn't scheduled for inclusion in the next beta, which ships later this month.
"There is no question that the long-term IBM strategy is to use Domino as a point of leverage to sell more infrastructure components like WebSphere, DB2, and Tivoli," said Matt Cain, an analyst with the Meta Group. "This is going to be a tumultuous time for IBM/Lotus as they rationalise what is Domino."