SAP: “Java and ABAP – The Best of Both Worlds”

SAP head office development group outlines how SAP will embrace J2EE standard

Sydney, AustraliaSAP AG (NYSE: SAP) is actively engaging Sun Microsoft’s Java standard to combine with its own proprietary language – ABAP – to provide the very best Web Application Server platform possible for today’s e-businesses, according to Peter Barth, Director of Technology Marketing at SAP Head Office Development Group.

Outlining SAP’s vision at SAPPHIRE ’01, Peter Barth from SAP’s Development Group in Germany announced that “we are actively working with the Java community to make sure we get the most out of this open source language to give our customers the very best web application server platform available,” said Barth.

Traditionally, ABAP has been recognised as very good at business applications but poor at presentation. Java, conversely, is excellent at presenting data but not so strong at deep-end business functionality. Therefore, the combination is ideal, especially working through SAP’s Web DynPro which sits within the Web Application Server and designs Java-based interfaces on the fly.

Originally announced in early November, SAP’s embrace of the J2EE standard (Java’s technical label) is excellent news for mySAP customers as SAP announced its latest e-business vision encompassing open integration (November 6). The vision encapsulates the Web Application Server, the exchange and integration infrastructure and the portal infrastructure which all enable complete compatibility with other vendor technologies. The obvious benefit of this vision is that organisations can achieve much more flexible and agile platforms, and reduce total cost of ownership at the same time by preserving the customer’s investment.

The rationale is compounded when one examines the vast community of support behind Java. ” For ABAP there is a developer community of one million. With Java we open are customers up to an additional 2-3 million developers,” explained Barth. “Java is emerging as one of the most dominant server-based platforms for e-business, however it does have its weaknesses. We are actively engaging the Java community to contribute APIs and standards and build support for our solutions.”

In a constantly changing environment, where collaboration is fundamental to success, open standards is the way forward. “SAP has established a leadership position in ERP II in both market share and product depth,” said Yvonne Genovese, research director at Gartner Inc. “SAP’s strategic direction is to provide tools that will enable users to integrate applications and processes internally, between enterprises and with third-party applications.”

Java developers and customers can find a growing number of development and deployment tools available for immediate download at www.sap.com/solutions/technology/keycapabilities/java.