PLATFORMS: The Trident information processing environment includes over 70 high-performance Silicon Graphics, HP and Sun servers and PC workstations.

BACKGROUND: Trident Systems, headquartered in Fairfax, Virginia, is a leader in building complex computer-based systems engineering solutions for a customer base that includes more than 50 Fortune 500 companies. The company has participated in a wide range of projects--from the design and development of large real-time systems to providing turnkey touch-screen systems for customers in over 40 countries worldwide. Trident also conducts research projects.

PROBLEM SOLVED: Trident was seeking a partner to provide a powerful object database which would serve as the core of their advanced systems engineering repository solution. They needed a company that would share its vision for a world-class product and would team with them to reach their target audience. Service and response time were critical, as were dependability and scalability of the repository solution. Jasmine's server-side method capability is key in minimizing network traffic by isolating data retrieval to the server and then transmitting only the desired data across the net as users request it. Trident has extended the Jasmine server to provide the systems engineering repository with features that did not exist in any commercially available object database, including attribute-level access controls, embedded agents and innovative object-cloning capabilities. With CA's resources, Trident development brought the new repository to market five months earlier and with more features than originally planned.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: The server-side methods capability, which is unique to Jasmine, offers a mechanism to embed sophisticated decision support algorithms in Trident's repository solution. Powerful multi-media support and very complete Java support were also very big pluses.

STRENGTHS: Not only is Jasmine a superior object database product, CA is the only large, established software provider in the pure object database market. Multiple benefits include: (1) the excellent quality of the Jasmine product with commitment to its evolution, (2) a highly qualified and dedicated technical support team, (3) competitive pricing and discount schedules, and (4) a marketing and business team with a demonstrated track record.

WEAKNESSES: There are some nice examples provided, but more sophisticated examples would be helpful.

SELECTION CRITERIA: CA's strategic commitment cemented Trident's decision to implement Jasmine. CA's strategy to embrace and extend the object- oriented database market is the single most significant event in the evolution of object-oriented databases and one Trident intends to capitalize on.

DELIVERABLES: Trident's product will provide a centralized engineering design repository in which the design objects can live independent of the tools which are used to synthesize and assess the design. It provides an environment which will permit the members of a design team to work collaboratively in defining design objects and enable the objects to be shared among the engineers and their respective modeling and simulation tools. It will provide the necessary security access controls and configuration management mechanisms to control access and modification of a design as it evolves throughout the product life cycle.

VENDOR SUPPORT: CA provided a highly skilled and motivated support team to help Trident developers bring its product to market. The Jasmine support team has saved Trident hundreds of man-hours by resolving key Viewpoint implementation challenges.

DOCUMENTATION: Overall, the quality is very good, except for the need for more detailed examples as noted above. Tutorials, including a very nice Getting Started guide, come printed for easy access.

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