ResQ! Gives 5250 a Complete Makeover

ResQ! (New York) -- formerly known as Advanced Transition Technologies (AT2) -- recently began shipping the latest version of its ResQ!Net Java applet, which provides hot link capabilities and security to clients accessing AS/400 applications or data.

ResQ!Net, which provides on-the-fly GUI connectivity to 5250 and 3270 host applications over the Web, is packaged as both a stand-alone application and as an add-on to IBM's eNetwork Host On-Demand.

Version 3.2 of the product, introduced at the beginning of the year, includes global variable support that enables users to automatically incorporate hotlinks from any Web site into their front-end applications. For example, a financial operation may be able to use ResQ!Net's global variable support to link to a foreign exchange site, and continuously download the current exchange rate for a given currency into end-users' GUIs, explains Jim Shapiro, executive VP of ResQ! "We can go out to a fixed Web page and assign it to a global variable, so you can either display it as part of your application or even do calculations on it."

The latest version also includes multi-currency and multi-language support, according to Shapiro, who adds that a "combined-screens" function is also available, enabling users to open multiple applications simultaneously on a single screen. The stand-alone version also now incorporates SSL (Secure Sockets Layer), a security layer which previously was only available on the IBM Host On-Demand version only. The latest version also includes a tab-order re-sequencing function that enables users to re-order tab sequence on input screens.

ResQ!Net also now enables administrators to force a session disconnection if the customized version of any screen is not available.

The Wade County government in North Carolina recently implemented ResQ!Net to make property tax information available from its AS/400 system to the public. With ResQ!Net, the government was able to reduce a 12-screen menu-driven green-screen interface to three GUI screens, Shapiro relates. In addition, the government is saving on printing and delivery costs, since the previous method for disseminating such information was through books published every year.

The next release of ResQ!Net, to be announced later this year, will include customizable Java screens that will interface across the board with major host emulation systems, including Host On-Demand, PCOMM (Personal Communications) or Java emulators.

"You will be able to customize your applications once, and it won't matter where you access them from," says Shapiro. "The end result will be the same custom GUI."

While the software effectively serves as a terminal replacement for 5250 or 3270 shops, it is also targeted at organizations that want to incorporate AS/400 or mainframe data into e-commerce applications, Shapiro says.

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