Friday, August 18, 2006


So what do vendors think of industry analysts?

Ismael Ghalimi, CEO of Intalio makes some interesting statements in his blog regarding industry analysts...

When asked, why don't analysts cover Intalio more? He responded without hesitation and stated:Because we do not pay them anymore. I wonder if other software companies that are adopting open source approaches should also consider the same? It would be interested to figure out which other open source customers have deliberately avoided paying analyst firms? I know of several firms in the security space that felt their money was better spent elsewhere. Maybe the folks following web 2.0 could comment on the notion that if you could build a website for say $50K and generate a million dollars in ad revenue, why should one actually cut another check for say $50K to an analyst firm for a very brief mention?

The more interesting statement though is his assertion that analysts should be paid by customers, not vendors and believes this would add a lot more credibility to their work. Here is where I choose to disagree. Credibility would actually go further down the toilet but it requires some explanation. If customers were to be the exclusive payors of research, its content would surely change. It would move away from marketshare and other useless metrics that don't help us build architectures that solve business problems towards things that are meaningful to us. If you thought about it, industry analysts have it pretty easy in that you vendors have been trained to brief them on everything making their lifes relatively easy. If enterprises were to pay, do you think we would ask the same questions? Do you think they would actually get away with 1/2 hour conversations? Do you think they would know how to research problems without dependence on vendors?

In terms of BPM enabling fine-grained entitlement, I absolutely love your thinking and hope that others in the blogosphere also chime in. Would love to hear Phil Gilberts thoughts from Lombardi on this topic. Anyway, the deeper question is not necessarily whether you can support it simply via modeling but can Intalio directly consume the XACML specification so that I can centralize fine-grained entitlement? Maybe if you don't do this already, you can beat the other vendors to the jump and show them how to do it correctly.

I do have one last question that I would love your thoughts on. If you had to make Intalio integrate with an Enterprise Service Bus, which one would you choose? Would it be the one Gartner favors? the one Forrester favors? or 100% open source standards based ServiceMix?

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