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Launch of New API Framework, Blueprint for Continuous Delivery
PHP 2013 Conference, Santa Clara, Calif.— October 8, 2013 – Today at the world’s leading conference for PHP Developers (ZendCon), Zend announced significant new offerings designed to empower companies to become more agile in their delivery of new applications.
The announcements include a new Blueprint for Continuous Delivery, a broad solution built on the Zend Server platform that is designed to accelerate and strengthen the process of bringing applications from code to production. It integrates all key processes involved – from Continuous Integration, to automating a company’s infrastructure and application release process – and is built on a foundation of collaboration between the development and operations teams.
In addition, today Zend launched a new open source project named Apigility, which is designed to enable companies to adopt an API-centric architecture that supports more agile application delivery. The Apigility project has the bold goal of providing the world’s easiest way to create and maintain high-quality API-based applications. Zend also announced an expansion of the Zend Server ecosystem to include integration with the Cloud Foundry Platform as a Service.
Agility Separates the Winners from the Losers
For companies today, agility is essential, and applications have become the lifeblood and public face to customers and partners. A recent study of over 400 executives, conducted by the IBM Institute for Business Value , found that although “effective software development – from ideation to delivery – is essential to achieving competitive advantage,” less than 20% of companies have successfully implemented agile delivery practices. More importantly, the study identified a huge gap between the market performances of companies who have mastered the software delivery cycle versus those who have not, finding that 70% of advanced companies “outperform their peers from a profitability standpoint.”
Clearly, companies must invest in an ability to develop, release and iterate apps quickly, or risk missing the window to innovate and seize market opportunities. Zend’s mission is to empower companies to achieve that advantage, which is otherwise known as agile delivery.
Apigility: The World’s Easiest Way to Create High-Quality APIs
API-based apps provide a core starting point for agile delivery. Businesses today must provide applications that work both on the Web and on different mobile devices, and that interconnect data and services from multiple existing back-end systems. Companies must achieve all of this with flexibility for growth and continuous innovation, while providing users with the clean, modern user experience that they have come to expect.
API-based apps are the enabler for that user experience. Recognizing the challenges of building API-centric architectures, Zend has launched Apigility, a new open-source project chartered with establishing the world’s easiest way to create APIs. Apigility provides an interface for building and maintaining APIs in a simple, standardized way, leveraging industry standards and best practices.
Zend Blueprint for Continuous Delivery
Companies cannot achieve agility if their development and operations organizations are bottlenecked. Continuous Delivery removes the traditional development-to-operations obstacles by re-defining the process by which apps flow from concept to market. The entire application lifecycle, from design and build to testing and release, becomes a single, streamlined, iterative process.
Zend’s Blueprint for Continuous Delivery has the Zend Server platform at its core, which provides consistency, automation and collaboration capabilities throughout the Continuous Delivery cycle. The Blueprint also includes a series of patterns. These patterns codify best practices for various steps of the cycle, and provide plug-ins that integrate Zend Server with the most popular Continuous Integration, infrastructure automation and monitoring software.
Clients can leverage these patterns to automate their core infrastructure and application release processes. For example, the pattern for Jenkins Continuous Integration can automatically perform test deployments after every integration build, deploying onto infrastructure automatically provisioned through Chef or Puppet.
“Zend has vast experience in assisting our large customers to automate key steps in the Continuous Delivery cycle,” said Zend CEO & Co-founder Andi Gutmans. “We’re excited to codify these best practices into patterns that can be easily adopted by thousands of additional companies of all sizes, enabling them to more rapidly gain the agility benefits of implementing a Continuous Delivery process.”
Today, Zend is announcing the first of many patterns
In the near future, Zend intends to release additional integrations, including patterns for Puppet Labs IT automation software, Bamboo Continuous Integration server and SNMP monitoring.
“If you’re not able to deliver value iteratively on an ongoing basis, you’re not developing for the Web,” said Jon Marston, VP of Engineering at English Central, an online English learning website with unique speech assessment technology for analyzing pronunciation. "We were able to implement Continuous Integration with Hudson and tie it into Maven, using the Zend SDK to create packaged applications for robust deployment using Zend Server. As a result, we’re now catching bugs before they make it to QA and pushing out new releases twice a week with much higher confidence.”
“We are excited to collaborate with Zend on delivering a pattern for automating the Enterprise PHP workload using Zend Server and Puppet Labs’ technologies,” said Mitch Sonies, VP of Business and Corporate Development at Puppet Labs. Adoption of DevOps and Continuous Delivery practices continues to accelerate within the Enterprise, and with it, the need for fully automated, scalable deployments.”
“Jenkins has always been an essential tool for Novadex, but deployment is not one of its native components. This means that before using Zend Server, we had to resort to creating our own scripting and packaging mechanisms for the deployment of our code,” said Andreas Roßbach, Chief Technology Officer at Novadex. “Leveraging Zend Server’s capabilities and SDK allowed this scripting to be simplified and to effortlessly support server clusters, enabling non-expert users to initiate deployments, while providing extra control and the flexibility essential for Novadex to stay at the forefront of cloud-based business communication management.”
“Enterprise IT is undergoing a major shift as the consumption of goods and services is becoming increasingly digital. Technology is now the primary touch point for the customer experience and the race is on to rapidly deliver new applications and services to market,” said Ken Cheney, VP of Business Development, Opscode. “Enterprise Chef and Zend Server provide the foundation for automating the entire application delivery lifecycle, providing the speed and agility necessary to meet the new normal of customer demand."
Zend Expands on the Cloud
The final piece for attaining true agility is to use an open cloud-based platform that can flex and scale according to business needs. Zend is announcing the intent to deliver a new integration with Cloud Foundry. Zend Server, Zend’s platform for Continuous Delivery, will be made available as a build pack to clients using the Cloud Foundry Platform-as-a-Service. Zend Server is already available on the IBM Smart Cloud, Amazon Web Services, Red Hat OpenShift, RightScale and several other clouds. Cloud Foundry is an important and welcome addition.
“We’re pleased that Zend intends to create a build pack for use with Pivotal CF, our enterprise PaaS powered by Cloud Foundry,” said James Watters, Head of Product, Marketing and Ecosystem for Cloud Foundry at Pivotal. “By bringing Zend Server to Cloud Foundry, PHP developers can now continuously deliver, iterate and scale their applications, making the application the new unit of deployment, not infrastructure. We believe Zend’s focus on API centric architectures and Continuous Delivery fits well with our vision of Pivotal CF, powered by Cloud Foundry, as the new standard in Enterprise PaaS for the next generation of business applications."
Zend’s Continuous Delivery Blueprint and patterns are available at www.zend.com/blueprint
Early access to the Apigilty project can be found at www.apigility.org
Zend welcomes contributions both to the blueprint patterns, which can be accessed at GitHub, and to the Apigility project
About Zend Technologies
Zend partners with businesses to rapidly deliver modern apps across mobile and cloud. Zend helped establish the PHP language, which today powers over 200 million applications and web sites. Zend’s flagship offering, Zend Server, is the leading Application Platform for developing, deploying and managing business-critical applications in PHP. Zend solutions are deployed at more than 40,000 companies, including NYSE Euronext, BNP Paribas, Bell Helicopter, France Telecom and other leading brands worldwide. Learn more at www.zend.com.
 IBM Institute for Business Value, “The software edge: How effective software development and delivery drives competitive advantage”, 2013. http://public.dhe.ibm.com/common/ssi/ecm/en/gbe03545usen/GBE03545USEN.PDF
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