Ever since making a commitment to using the open source Cloud Foundry platform-as-a-service (PaaS) environment as the underlying platform for deploying its rapid application development (RAD) environment, Mendix has been working on expanding its partnerships with providers of distributions of Cloud Foundry.
Today, Mendix announced that its namesake RAD environment can now be deployed on the Cloud Foundry PaaS environment offered by Pivotal, the arm of EMC that originally created the open source PaaS environment.
Gottfried Sehringer, vice president of marketing for Mendix, says that the alliance with Pivotal makes it possible to deploy Mendix on premise or in the cloud using the Pivotal PaaS. In addition, Mendix has created a Mendix Cloud Foundry buildpack that turns Mendix application into Cloud Foundry Droplets. Available as open source code that can be found on the Cloud Foundry community repository on GitHub, Sehringer says the buildpack includes a run-time implementation of Mendix to enable those applications to run on any Cloud Foundry environment. IT organizations call also access pre-built Mendix application components via the Mendix cloud marketplace that can then be deployed on Cloud Foundary.
The Mendix alliance with Pivotal comes on the heels of similar deals with Hewlett-Packard and Blue Box. In general, Sehringer says that Mendix is trying to establish its development platform as a de facto RAD standard for Cloud Foundry environments.
At a time when many organizations are looking at expanding application development backlogs, Sehringer says RAD tools are emerging as a vehicle through which organizations can rapidly build enterprise applications without having to write code or, for that matter, employ the services of a professional developer.
Of course, many IT organizations would prefer to see many more applications developed outside an IT department that generally is already overwhelmed with projects. The real challenge is not so much installing a framework that would empower a new generation of “citizen developers “to take on those projects in place of professional developers, but just as significantly instilling in them the confidence that they can do it.