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Publication Detail
The impact of research on middleware technology
  • Publication Type:
  • Authors:
    Emmerich W, Aoyama M, Sventek J
  • Publication date:
  • Pagination:
    89, 112
  • Published proceedings:
    Operating Systems Review (ACM)
  • Volume:
  • Issue:
  • Status:
  • Print ISSN:
The middleware market represents a sizable segment of the overall Information and Communication Technology market. In 2005, the annual middleware license revenue was reported by Gartner to be in the region of 8.5 billion US Dollars. In this article we address the question whether research had any involvement in the creation of the technology that is being sold in this market? We attempt a scholarly discourse. We present the research method that we have applied to answer this question. We then present a brief introduction into the key middleware concepts that provide the foundation for this market. It would not be feasible to investigate any possible impact that research might have had. Instead we select a few very successful technologies that are representative for the middleware market as a whole and show the existence of impact of research results in the creation of these technologies. We investigate the origins of web services middleware, distributed transaction processing middleware, message oriented middleware, distributed object middleware and remote procedure call systems. For each of these technologies we are able to show ample influence of research and conclude that without the research conducted by PhD students and researchers in university computer science labs at Brown, CMU, Cambridge, Newcastle, MIT, Vrije, and University of Washington as well as research in industrial labs at APM, AT&T Bell Labs, DEC Systems Research, HP Labs, IBM Research and Xerox PARC we would not have middleware technology in its current form. We summarise the article by distilling lessons that can be learnt from this evidenced impact for future technology transfer undertakings.
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