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Top 6 Reasons You Shouldn't Have a Need for Speed

Top 6 Reasons You Shouldn't Have a Need for Speed

November 13, 2015 0 Comments
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The "need for speed" is a misconception that has driven software development for too long. I have a ’66 GTO with more speed than I know what to do with. I wondered what features, other than speed, would get me to upgrade?

I have worked at Progress as a software engineer for more than 20 years and this is my first blog post. Why did I decide to write a blog post now? Well, I have been struggling with a misconception that has driven software for many years, which is that the only reason to upgrade to or even develop new software is for faster performance.

I recently slammed head-on into this “need for speed” mindset while working to develop our new WebSpeed feature in the recently released Progress Pacific Application Server for OpenEdge (hereafter to be called: PASOE).

Now, in our previous release of PASOE, we upgraded our classic AppServer architecture. As a result, PASOE was expected to have better performance and use fewer resources than our classic AppServer as a core part of its designed features. 

In PASOE 11.6 we have added WebSpeed functionality, and we’re very excited about how it improves the product. However, WebSpeed has always been very fast, so pure performance was not high on the required features. This is where the “need for speed” mindset ambushed us. We were confronted with the requirement of demonstrably “faster” performance because of the feeling that it is what customers will expect.

While struggling with this requirement, I knew there were several reasons other than speed for upgrading to the new WebSpeed. At first, I was at a loss for how to explain it, but then I got to thinking about a hobby of mine.

That hobby is classic muscle cars. I have a ’66 GTO (hereafter to be known as: Bernadette) with more speed than I know what to do with. I wondered what features, other than speed, would get me to upgrade Bernadette?

  1. Speed is still important, but faster is not required
  2. Better economy, go farther on less
  3. Easy to maintain, parts are plentiful and easy to find   
  4. Better gauges, more gauge options with better lighting
  5. Modern luxuries, all the features you expect from new cars (A/C, power: doors, windows, locks)
  6. Anti-theft system, more than just locking your door

There’s no doubt that any of these improvements would be a nice upgrade, even if the top speed only remained level. Now that we have a shopping list of improvements for Bernadette, how does that relate back to WebSpeed?

  1. Speed

    Despite not being our top priority, the new WebSpeed actually
    will be faster than the classic WebSpeed. Many of our performance tests show a 24% improvement in roundtrip times.

  2. Better Economy

    The latest PASOE uses fewer system resources than before. It utilizes fewer infrastructure components and a multi-session agent to use 48% less CPU and 78% less memory. This allows for more processing with the same hardware!

  3. Easy to Maintain

    ll applications can now run in one deployment with a single command-line tool for management. Additionally, all application types (SOAP, REST, APSV and WEB) are supported in a single framework.

  4. Better Gauges

    With industry standard monitoring tools, PASOE can be viewed in several formats and styles. PASOE supports JMX, REST management and 3rd party tools (like Nagios). Of course, Progress’ OpenEdge Management is still available.

  5. Modern Luxuries

    Not only does PASOE support your classic WebSpeed applications, but it also has a new Object Oriented coding model. This allows for URL naming, OOABL programming, and all of the popular HTTP Verbs (GET, POST, DELETE, UPDATE, and more).

  6. Anti-theft System

    Protecting your application is a top priority, so PASOE uses Spring security for authentication and HTTPS is enabled by default. When installed in Production mode PASOE is secured and access must be enabled for each application.

We’re very proud of our new product and its features, but not just because it’s faster! There are many great improvements added even beyond the new WebSpeed too. Please download the new 11.6 OpenEdge and see if you like our new muscle car!


Roy Ellis

Roy has worked at Progress for over 20 years. After starting in Technical Support, Roy moved to the WebSpeed development team. Since then he has helped to deliver many products and features, including: the AdminServer, NameServer, AppServer, OpenEdge Explorer and Management, Arcade and recently the new Progress Application Server for OpenEdge. He enjoys working with customers and presenting at many customer events.

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