May 2005

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Trend Updates Financial Applications using Codefutures FireStorm/DAO


Trend Updates Financial Applications using CodeFutures FireStorm/DAO for its Java Persistence Architecture

[ Denver , CO , May 24, 2005] Trend S.p.a., the Italian leader in banking and financial software applications, has chosen FireStorm/DAO to provide its Java persistence architecture.

Trend’s customer base was built up over a long period, with COBOL being the primary programming language. While Trend’s customers were satisfied with their solutions, Trend recognized the need to move to a more modern programming language and development environment.

Walter Scalvini, Senior Software Engineer, explains “Most of our software was written in Cobol. In last year, we have had the need to update old software modules and to develop new applications, using up-to-date technologies. Our choice was the Java language and J2EE architecture.”

One important issue that Trend focused on was that any new or updated applications needed to interact seamlessly with the data in existing applications. Scalvini explains “Modeling and building new applications must rely on pre-existent data models. There are lot of databases with hundreds of tables with dozens of columns and relations. So it was very important to be able to build a data access layer for all these data structures.”

Andy Grove, CodeFutures’ CTO, says “Companies now have massive amounts of data locked in existing databases, often scattered throughout the enterprise. It’s essential that companies have a good strategy for realizing the business value locked in their databases and that means a good, future-proof data access architecture.’

Trend analyzed its requirements regarding data access architecture, which would be required for all future applications. Scalvini identified the requirements “The essential aspects were: productivity, standard approach, quality, consistency, and abstraction.”

Trend decided to use the Data Access Objects for its architecture, because it is a Core J2EE Design Pattern. For Java persistence technology, Trend wishes to remain flexible and choose the most appropriate technology for each solution. Trend carefully examined the Java persistence products available on the market. Scalvini explains the results of the competitive analysis “After many tests and audits, we chose Firestorm/DAO code generator. Among all the products evaluated, Firestorm/DAO Architect Edition is surely the product that gives us the highest level of freedom, at the same time presenting all characteristics we needed”.

“It’s always a pleasure to win the confidence of a customer, and that’s especially true in a competitive situation when the customer is very thorough.” Says PJ Murray, CEO, CodeFutures Software.

The benefits of FireStorm/DAO identified by Trend were:


  • Productivity
    Writing all necessary code by hand for typical financial application with very large databases would take months of work.
  • Standard, simplicity, and efficiency
    Code generation based on development pattern, well defined and accepted as standard in chosen architecture (DAO).
  • Quality
    Generated software with characteristics of quality, easy to be read and modified, bugs free.
  • Consistency
    Class structure, methods, parameters, naming conventions are automatically managed by code generator using templates.
  • Abstraction
    Easiness in changing generation options, driven by application needs, and choosing the most appropriate persistence management technique (EJB, JDO, Hibernate framework, JDBC)


Additional information is available here:


Additional information on FireStorm/DAO is available here:


Additional information on Data Access Objects is available here:


FireStorm/DAO is available for free evaluation from:


The FireStorm/DAO Enterprise Edition is priced at $595 per developer. FireStorm/DAO Architect Edition is priced at $3,495 per developer. There are no runtime deployment licensing fees.

About Trend S.p.a.

Trend is the Italian leader in developing and delivering software applications for banking and financial companies. Trend offers a portfolio of software solutions coveraling all operational and strategic issues specifically tailored to banking institutions and insurance companies. The range of applications includes customer management, business control and planning, and regulatory reporting. Trend’s customers include 19 of the top 21 major banks in Italy .

About CodeFutures Software

CodeFutures is the leading supplier of Java software development products for advanced data persistence. The benefits provided by CodeFutures’ approach are higher developer productivity, better software quality, and lower maintenance costs. CodeFutures’ first product, the award-winning FireStorm/DAO, makes software developers more productive by generating the Java code for accessing relational databases.

CodeFutures’ code generation approach provides faster and cheaper application development, higher quality applications, more predictable and consistent results, faster software product development cycle times, faster time to market for commercial application development, reduced project costs, and reduced project risks. CodeFutures approach ensures that the focus of software developers is solving business problems.

CodeFutures’ products are used by corporate Java software programmers in sectors such as television (BBC Technology, Turner Broadcasting), finance (Lehman Brothers, JP Morgan), military systems (BAE, Lockheed Martin), government (Missouri Lottery, Port of Barcelona), IT consulting (Siemens Business Systems, LogicaCMG, BearingPoint, SDS, IBM), retail (MetCash, Ahold USA), high technology (EMC, Macromedia), and industry (Suzuki, AREVA).

Eating some Hibernate dogfood

Eating some Hibernate dogfood

CodeFutures has a policy of “eating our own dogfood“. For CodeFutures, it means using FireStorm/DAO on real projects.We started using FireStorm/DAO to build all our internal systems for tracking licenses, our Customer Portal, finance, and much more. It’s actually amazing how much can be achieved with a very simple MySQL database, a DAO tier, and a JSP client.

We build all of these systems from scratch, with FireStorm/DAO as the primarly tool. Not only did it help us identify new features (for example, partial schema support and Struts client generation), but it also allowed us to identify and change the emphasis of our marketing messages.

By eating our own dogfood, we’ve realized how often project requirements are a moving target because internal systems evolve over time. It’s not the fault of the project sponsor really. You just can’t really guess all the requirements for a new system. You have to use it. So we’ve added projects with changing requirements and lower long term maintenance costs as two of the key benefits of FireStorm/DAO.

Customer feedback from real projects and eating our own dogfood on real internal projects supply almost all new features in FireStorm/DAO. As a product manager, I should be looking at competitive products and technologies. The simple truth is that there’s no time.

We completed all our internal systems about mid way through last year. We then had the idea that we should do some professional services projects that use FireStorm/DAO. It’s another way of using the product on a real project. We’ve done two of those projects so far and we’ve decided on a policy of continuing to ensure that all developers working on FireStorm/DAO do at least one development project using FireStorm/DAO each year.

Release 3.0 is available in Early Access. The main new feature is Hibernate support. However, none of us has experience developing a commercial application using Hibernate. At the moment, we can’t find any commercial projects that want to use Hibernate in the architecture. And we don’t want to launch a beta or Release Candidate without knowing that our Hibernate support is what real users want.

So that means we need help from developers on real projects that use Hibernate. If you’re interested in taking a look at the preview of Release 3.0, send an email to

PJ Murray
CodeFutures Software

Java Software Factories: Part 12 – Business Focus

Java Software Factories: Part 12 – Business Focus

CodeFutures somes asks its customers for testimonials. We always ask pretty much the same question open ended question: why did you choose FireStorm/DAO. We use this question as a form of market research, as well as a way to ensure that our testimonials are the “real thing” rather than the dreadful ghost-written testimonials often used in the software industry.One surprising answer that we’ve seen several times is that developers like code generation because it allows them to focus on solving real business problems. It somewhat surprising because software developers have, it seems unfairly, a poor reputation for delivering on business requirements.

The idea is best explained by some some senior developers in their own words:

“FireStorm DAO has enabled us to deliver business functionality and benefits for our customers by not having to go through the repetitive, tedious process of writing database access code.” Robert Peck, Lead Architect, Ahold USA

“Before we discovered FireStorm/DAO, we were reluctant to write DAO code ourselves as it required a lot of time and effort. Now we can concentrate on the real business logic and application requirements.” Kobus Steenekamp, Senior Java Developer, Discovery Health

The benefits improved business focus provided by using code generators is considerably amplified by the entire Java Software Factories approach.

PJ Murray
CodeFutures Software