ResQNet Adds Wireless-Access

The onslaught of whatever-to-host products continues, as has announced the release of ResQ/ME—a wireless-to-host offering that allows palm computers access to mainframe and AS/400 applications.

In recent months, host-access has become one of the most hotly-contested segments of the midrange market, which is not surprising due to the industry's renewed, post-Y2K focus on e-business. With an increasing number of companies migrating their business strategies to the Web, a need to access, input and exchange data anywhere, anytime has arisen.

As an increasing number of companies migrate their business strategies to the Web,’s ResQ/Me provides a method to access, input and exchange data from anywhere. has long been at the forefront of host-access application development, having released intranet/extranet (ResQNet), Internet (ResQPortal), and now wireless (ResQ/Me) solutions for tapping into host-based data.

Other major AS/400, host-access players include SEAGULL and ClientSoft, which both beat to market with wireless-to-host offerings. However, Anura Guruge, a leading independent technical consultant, says's competition has "missed the point" with their wireless-to-host solutions. "The big thing here is that with a wireless device you need to be able to easily reconfigure a 5250 screen," says Guruge.

Without the ability to swiftly rehost screens, a user of wireless-to-host technology is limited in what they can do to implement modifications to AS/400 applications on their wireless-access devices, says Guruge. A user could have the provider reconfigure the screens, which is a process usually accompanied by a hefty tech-support fee. Or, they could push a traditional monitor-size screen, which would entail a substantial amount of scrolling.

Guruge says ResQ/Me provides the user more flexibility, as it supports on-the-fly, user-interface rejuvenation and drag-and-drop customization. These features ensure that any changes made to a 5250 screen can be quickly and painlessly incorporated into a wireless-access interface. " approached wireless-to-host from a user engineering angle," says Guruge. "Easy installation, easy customization."

According to Jim Shapiro, executive VP of business development for, with two days of training, a user can learn to customize screens in 20 minutes.

Using the same Customization Studio as's Java-based and HTML-based host-access solutions, ResQ/Me presents AS/400 green screens as GUIs. Shapiro says GUI presentations are advantageous for wireless-to-host technologies because they provide the ability to create shortcut buttons.

Because a personal digital assistant’s (PDA) viewable screen width of 40 characters is far smaller than an AS/400 green screen, combining multiple processes into a single shortcut button can help maximize screen usage and increase usability. And while Shapiro says attempting to input large quantities of information using a wireless-to-host device isn't feasible, he describes shortcut buttons as a big help for accessing data.

In addition, Shapiro says the interfaces created with the Customization Studio can be used interchangeably with ResQ/Me, ResQPortal, and ResQNet.

"Essentially you could have a totally non-programming solution for three products." Some tweaks may be necessary, however, to configure a ResQPortal and/or ResQNet interface for optimal use on a smaller viewable screen in the ResQ/Me environment.

ResQ/Me is fully WAP-compatible and can be installed directly on a mainframe or AS/400 to support large quantities of simultaneous users. A starter kit, which includes the server component, Customization Studio, and 25 concurrent user sessions, can be purchased for $30,000. Each additional concurrent user session costs $199.

Related Editorial:

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  • Hummingbird Signs on With ResQNet

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