IBM's Rational Software unit open source project is designed to help IT organisations improve collaboration among globally distributed software development teams.
Danny Sabbah, general manager of Rational Software, compared the Jazz program, which will reach users through its Jazz.net web site, to the Eclipse Foundation open source community's role in providing standards and techniques for improving integrated development environments.
The Jazz.net web site will support a community of developers and offer access to industry standard specifications, and to open source code that can be used to build visualisation tools, dashboards, instant messaging applications and other tools for improving communication among dispersed developers. Developers can determine on the site which standards they "need to establish requirements that will allow [them] to be globally distributed," Sabbah says. "The site can also help them "understand how test cases need to change whenever [their] requirements change," he says.
The site will also allow its users to propose changes to industry development standards, Sabbah said.
"We want to start a conversation with the rest of the broader software development community much like we did with Eclipse," Sabbah says. "Jazz will start doing that but also will manifest itself around the notion of collaborative, concurrent software engineering."
In addition to targeting ever-more globally distributed software development teams, the new project also aims to support the collaboration need by teams using and building service-oriented architectures, Sabbah says. Developers can use the standards and tools on the site to help communicate changes that they are making to an SOA architecture blueprint, and they can benefit from the community feedback available in an open source project, he added.