RealTime IT News

Business Integration Via Open Source

Business integration software has long been the exclusive playground of proprietary closed source vendors.

But a new open source startup called Jitterbit is hoping to change the landscape a bit with its newly released Jitterbit 1.0 platform.

Jitterbit's self-named business integration software enables users, on either Windows or Linux, to integrate and connect data from diverse applications, whether they're CRM , ERP , data warehouse or other data stores.

The data can be connected via XML or any number of other different protocols, including SOAP , ODBC , HTTP and FTP .

With the 1.0 release, Jitterbit is including its own bit of integration magic in the form of "Jitterpacks," XML documents that include a pre-defined Jitterbit integration scenario.

Jitterpaks enable users to quickly set up their integration to take advantage of re-use scenarios that others in the Jitterbit open source community may have already solved.

Jitterbit is licensed under the Jitterbit public license, which is a derivative of the Mozilla Public License (MPL) under which the Firefox Web browser is released.

There is a Community and a Professional version of the software, with the key difference between the two being professional support and consulting.

The Community version is free, and the Professional version runs $9,995.

Jitterbit co-founder and CEO Sharam Sasson claims that the barriers to adopting Jitterbit are very low as long as the product meets customers' requirements.

Since the product beta was first made available in February of this year, Jitterbit has been downloaded over 3400 times according to Sasson.

"This is a very significant number in the application integration market where vendors spend six to 12 months trying to sell their solution to a customer," Sasson told internetnews.com.

"The Jitterbit business model has customers downloading and applying Jitterbit to solve their integration problems before they have to consider a commercial relationship with Jitterbit for professional support and maintenance services."

The Business Integration software space is full of large enterprise vendors such as IBM, webMethods, Tibco and even Microsoft. Jitterbit isn't necessarily going after the large enterprises though.

"Jitterbit typically replaces the scripting and coding that small and mid-sized organizations write all the time to fulfill very specific point-to-point integration requirements between two applications, or between files and applications," Sasson said.

"The customers that we have a commercial relationship with have told us that their alternative was Microsoft BizTalk, and they chose Jitterbit due to its simplicity and open source nature."

Sasson did admit though that Jitterbit does not currently have all the connectivity and tools that satisfy every customer's integration needs, but they're working on it.

"Every major release of the product from this point will add more to the tools and the ability to connect to different types of systems with contributions from the open source community," Sasson explained. "This should broaden the adoption of the product."