webMethods is a corporation not a product

Dan Green, the creator of this fine site, had posted this “Resourcing Newsletter” some years ago:


Given the number of recent posts referring to webMethods as a product and that doing so is a personal peeve of mine, I thought I’d post an updated version of Dan’s article (still targeted to IT recruiters):

webMethods is a corporation, not a product.

The webMethods corporation produces many software products ([URL=“API Integration Platform | Software AG”]API Integration Platform | Software AG). The product names have evolved over the years but the current primary product is “webMethods Fabric.” It is an umbrella product which consists of four “key product offerings” which are essentially groupings of webMethods-produced components.

The complete list of more-or-less independent but integrated components:

webMethods Integration Server
webMethods Mainframe
webMethods Broker
webMethods Adapters (these usually have their own individual name)
webMethods Trading Networks
webMethods EDI Module
webMethods EDIINT
webMethods Servicenet
webMethods Monitor
webMethods Glue
webMethods Administrator
webMethods Modeler
webMethods Workflow
webMethods Manager
webMethods Optimize
webMethods Dashboard
webMethods Portal

These products are DISTINCT and DIFFERENT from each other. Some have dependencies on others (e.g. Trading Networks requires Integration Server) but they each provide unique features. When you ask someone if they know webMethods, you are exposing your technical ignorance. Asking someone how to do something using webMethods is like asking how to do something using Microsoft or IBM. It’s ambiguous.

When your clients tell you that they need people with “webMethods” experience, ask them “Which webMethods product? Integration Server or Broker? Workflow? Servicenet?” These are very different skill sets and a person proficient in one is not necessarily skilled in the others. This will help you present only qualified people for interviews.

I think I’ve given up on trying to make people understand that webMethods is a company and not a product. The majority of posts still refer to “how to do X in webMethods.” Even webMethods itself refers to webMethods as though it were a product. From their SOA brochure:

Note that they’ve resumed the “just three mouse clicks” marketing nonsense.

Oh well. Perhaps things will change with SAG acquisition–“how do I do X with SAG?” :slight_smile:

I thought they had expunged the “three clicks” BS a couple of years ago, but I found it in some marketing-generated material a few months ago and pointed it out.

Maybe IS 7.1 will make it possible to achieve “just three mouse clicks to interoperable web services” and they are anticpating that glorious day?


With all due respect I think you are being too picky about use of the name webMethods (company vs product). When someone says “How do I do x with webMethods”, I have a pretty good idea what they mean. The wm product line is not comparable to that of IBM or Microsoft, so I don’t think your analogy is accurate.

I don’t want to pose my questions like "How do I concatenate a string with Integration Server, or Developer (oops, it’s now Designer).

Have you driven a Ford lately?

Just my opinion.

Undoubtedly. Most people just don’t care about the distinction between company and product. It’s been going on forever. Lotus was the company, 1-2-3 was the product, but EVERYONE referred to the spreadsheet product as Lotus. Netscape sold Navigator, but noone ever called it Navigator. When someone says “we use Oracle” we all assume they mean the DB, not the myriad of other products Oracle sells.

I know I’ll never change the world. :slight_smile: I couldn’t even get participants on wMUsers to stop using wM to refer to the product suite!

Me too. It is relatively rare that one cannot determine which product is being asked about from the context of the question. Sometimes we have to ask though, because there can be multiple answers.

Fair enough. Here’s a different set: TIBCO, BEA, Vitria, Fiorano. Much narrower product suites than IBM or Microsoft. None of those have a product named after the company either. And they have multiple products which are quite distinct from each other. If I ask how to do messaging with TIBCO, would I be directed to Rendezvous or SmartSockets info? How would I do string concatenation with TIBCO? The answers will be driven by a presumption of which product I’m (implicitly) asking about. I think it is better to be explicit.

Why not? Is it really any more difficult? Abbreviate Integration Server to IS and it’s even shorter. And it avoids the ambiguity of being potentially confused with “how do I concatenate a string within Workflow”. It also indicates that the person posing the question probably understands the platform a bit more.

No it isn’t. Developer has not become Designer, at least not yet. Designer is the design-time tool replacing Workflow, Modeler and Access (are there any Access users out there?). Developer is still its own thing. (An example of why the use of the right name can be helpful!)

“Can someone tell me the steps for changing the oil in my Ford? I’m completely new so I don’t know where anything is.”

Would you agree that the answer for an F-150 would be different than for a Mustang or a Focus? Even within the F-150 line, the answer might be different for different models? IMO, it is better to be more specific when possible to avoid confusion.

Absolutely. My rants are just mine too. The airing of different POVs is fun!

I rant about people being referred to as “resources” too but I’m having no luck there either! :slight_smile:

Since most of the posts here at wMUsers have historically been related to Integration Server and Trading Networks, the risk of ambiguity is lessened. However as the new BPM and SOA Governance tools gain traction (one hopes anyway), precision will remain important. This is especially true when one can use more than one tool to accomlish the same task.

Also, IS Developer is still Developer. It is the development tool for Modeler and Workflow that is now just Designer.


IMO, specificity never hurts and often helps, especially when the question is, “How do I [insert your choice of highly generalized task description here] with webMethods?” At this point one often has to ferret out which products and versions are licensed and available, etc. Also, I’ve noticed that there does seem to be some correlation in forum posts between experience using the products and the tendency to be specific about which one is involved in the question. This can sometimes help responders decide what kind of (initial) answer to provide.



After acquisition of webMethods by SoftwareAG, webMethods now has become the product name and company name is now SoftwareAG :).


Yeah. Kinda referred to that last April further up in the thread.

I have a requirement please let me know the solution. What my requirement is I am using JDBC adapter for managing oracle databace. I want to take a record from a table and then publish that record to broker. so,I know how to get the record but i don’t know how to publish that record.

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