What could be better than a second Christmas in June? Santa is bringing the gift of great UI in IBM BPM 8.5.7. No longer will you have to worry about which UI toolkit to choose. No longer will have to choose between out of the box IBM BPM UI for free and functionality from third-party UI vendors. The best IBM BPM UI Toolkit is now embedded in IBM BPM for free (READ: WHY IBM CHOSE SALIENT PROCESS AND SPARK)
The "gift" is SPARK UI, and while it has been around for a while, and IBM BPM customers have had access to it or previous versions through us or IBM for over three years now, as of May 24th IBM is officially the owner of SPARK UI. IBM now owns the intellectual property for SPARK UI, which means they can and will freely include it in any version of IBM BPM going forward.
About a year ago this time, IBM and Salient Process announced a partnership whereby IBM would resell Salient's IBM BPM SPARK UI Toolkit with the intention of IBM eventually owning the SPARK UI intellectual property and embedding the toolkit into their IBM BPM product. Our goal was to have the SPARK UI Toolkit ready to be part of the IBM BPM product by July of 2017. We are very excited to let you know that time is upon us. On June 23rd, SPARK UI was officially included in the June Cumulative Fix (IBM BPM 8.5.7 CF 2017.06).
What this means is IBM BPM 8.5.7 (CF2017.06 fix pack and later) customers will have the best IBM BPM UI Toolkit on earth for free. For those IBM BPM customers who have not upgraded to the latest fix pack yet, you will still have access to a SPARK UI Community download through Salient, and even updates to a pre 8.5.7 CF2017.06 version of SPARK UI. However, if you are on a pre-BPM 8.5.7 CF2017.06 version and want Enterprise SPARK, you will need to purchase the Toolkit through IBM or an authorized reseller (shameless plug: Salient is an authorized reseller).
This outcome is the result of a unique partnership between IBM, Nividous, and Salient Process. In June of 2016, the IBM and Salient engineering teams began working on the necessary upgrades to the toolkit to bring it up to IBM's global and enterprise requirements (known as Bluewashing). This included things such as local language and accessibility. This Bluewash happens with every product IBM buys, and was a great learning experience for us in how much it takes to support software used globally.
Around August of 2016, we realized we needed a bit more manpower in order to meet our goal of bluewashing SPARK UI by June 2017, so we added a couple of engineers from Nividous to the team. We were already partnering with Nividous in other areas, so there was a level of mutual trust in our abilities to work together and deliver on promises, which made this a very easy choice for us. Many thanks to the team at Nividous for helping us cross the finish line. We would not have met the release date without their hard work and dedication.
Here at Salient, our first value is "We Are One." This is of course about teamwork and the fact great teams are not a 1+1=2 outcome and endeavor, but rather a 1+1=4 (or more) outcome and endeavor. Many times, a great team can outperform more money, more manpower, and more reputation. We were fortunate this was the case this time, as Salient is a small, but highly innovative company. We will continue to partner with IBM (and others) on offerings our customers need and want, and we will continue to bring innovate process products to the market, such as Ignition, BPM+SF, UI Migration, and others, so stay tuned.