Software AG finds 4GL and Eclipse to be a Natural fit

Fourth-generation languages may appear to be yesterday's technology, swept aside by more contemporary development platforms like Java or Microsoft's .Net. But Software AG , citing a substantial deployment of applications based on its Natural 4GL, will offer this week an IDE that puts Natural and Java developers on the same wavelength.

The company on Tuesday will unveil NaturalOne, an Eclipse-based IDE for enterprise application development. The IDE enables developers leveraging the 35-year-old Natural language to expose Natural objects as Web services and build rich Web interfaces. Applications can run on mainframes or platforms like Unix, Windows, and Linux.

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"What this is, is an integrated toolset that allows you to manage and develop applications in a single, all-in-one Eclipse environment," said Bruce Beaman, senior director for product marketing at Software AG.

NaturalOne lets Java and Natural developers share a similar developer experience, Beaman explained. "The reality is, [Natural developers are] now working with Java programmers in their shops, and what we're trying to do is come up with a common platform," he said.

Applications built using Natural typically are custom systems for such uses as financial services, government, airlines, and higher education, Beaman said. Systems supporting SOA and business process management can be developed via Natural, Software AG said.

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