Computer Associates (CA) spelled out a "modular" future to a smaller than anticipated gathering at its annual world user conference in Orlando, Florida this week.
Estimates of attendees were as low as 6000 compared to more than 20,000 last year, which had some exhibitors fuming. Despite this, the company made a series of product and partnership announcements.
CA officials claim its new modular approach, which includes offering systems management in six new modules under its Jasmine ebusiness platform infrastructure, will put the company well ahead of its competitors.
The Jasmine brand will cover applications for portals, knowledge management, predictive analysis and visualisation.
The modularised version of UniCenter TNG, Version 3.0, is a web infrastructure management module for monitoring BEA Systems' WebLogic, IBM's WebSphere and Oracle's 9i application server.
Vendors such as PeopleSoft, Oracle, Nokia, Motorola, and webMethods have signed on to support UniCenter.
The latest version will offer five other modules for managing network systems for service levels, automated operations, IT resources, databases, and applications.
Sanjay Kumar, CA president and chief executive, who recently made headlines because of a surprise proxy bid to replace CA's board, emphasised the company's openness, cross-platform support and platform agnosticism.
"Being Swiss is a very good thing," he said. [A reference to the position of neutrality held by Switzerland.]
Kumar also mentioned CA as a good corporate citizen and highlighted its community involvement and progressive workforce policies and benefits.
In addition, CA overhauled its eTrust security products and introduced its new public key infrastructure eTrust solution designed to be integration friendly.
The company also said it is consolidating its storage applications under its new BrightStor brand and releasing its first product, BrightStor Enterprise Backup.
CA has also expanded its partnership with EMC and will jointly offer a package featuring applications tailored to EMC's TimeFinder software.
Hurwitz Group analyst Evan Quinn said that in the past two years, CA has been moving away from a more conservative approach and beginning to compete with more late-breaking technologies.
"They're beginning to compete head-to-head with BEA and IBM and beginning to get into some of those bids. They do a good job of executing primarily within their installed base."
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