Tools vendor Borland has hosted a series of conferences to educate Australian developers about Web services, and how Borland's tools have been modified to create and access them.
The conferences, held in Sydney and Canberra last week and Melbourne the week before, were intended to highlight the opportunities in the nascent Web services space. It was also an opportunity for the vendor to begin promoting the capabilities of its Delphi product, which can access and build a Web service.
Andrew Munroe, Borland Australia's managing director, said that vendors are mostly responsible for the hype around Web services, but for good reason. "It's still early days, but the standards that define what Web services are and how to access them are becoming solid," he said. "It is only now that vendors are starting to make products available that take advantage of it."
Munroe said the concept driving the hype is the promise that Web services will provide a fast and effective way of allowing applications to communicate with each other. "Building this kind of infrastructure from scratch would be a complicated and timely project, so we are providing the tools to do it easily and effectively," he said.
The price tag for Delphi might be a little higher than the likes of Microsoft's VisualStudio.NET, but in Munroe's opinion Delphi provides an easier way of creating feature-rich applications across several platforms. He said that in most projects the purchase price for such a tool would be less than two weeks of a programmer's wages. "It's easy to justify that cost."
While the Web services conferences are now over, Munroe said developers could always make further enquiries through the vendor's "Club Borland" events held in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra and Brisbane. Details on these events and the upcoming BorCon event are available at www.borland.com.au.