Saturday, June 28, 2008

Is Iona finally in the deadpool?

Iona Technologies, a company that caused me a lot of pain with their complex and buggy CORBA products, was sold a few days ago for just $162 million dollars - or $4 a share, down from $98 a share at the dot com hight in 2000.

Iona was an early implementer of CORBA in both the C++ and Java spaces with their Orbix product. Typical of early implementations of new technologies they did proprietary extensions to fill obvious gaps in the CORBA specs, and just as typical of early implementors they got lazy and failed to keep up with cleaner ways of doing things as the specs evolved. gggrrrr. Orbix became one of those license fee legacy cash cows.

I got some perverse enjoyment replacing Orbix with the open source omniORB (solid as a rock!) whenever I had the chance. Its poor performance inspired a colleague and myself to begin writing a "real-time" ORB, but we never finished the product.

On a scary note I mentioned the Iona acquisition to a mid-level developer colleague of mine and he asked "What is CORBA?". I'm getting to old for this sh... shell scripting.

Although Iona is no more I'm sure Orbix will live on in legacy systems for a while. We'll meet again :)

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