By marrying Heroku's Ruby focus to their own VMforce Java platform, Salesforce.com hopes to become the de facto leader in cloud application development and delivery, according to the official press release. A claimed 110,000 apps have already been written for Heroku's open Ruby PaaS - which means Salesforce.com gets a developer community built into the deal.
But beyond just market share, Salesforce's press release indicates that the two have a unity of purpose, with a mutual understanding that there needs to be an "open and portable" cloud application programming environment. In fact, Salesforce is quick to praise Heroku's multi-tenant philosophy, which they say is the hallmark of their own Force.com application platform.
Of course, they're hoping that this ideology -- coupled with the combined forces of the Ruby-on-Rails and Java developer bases will draw them a "critical mass" of customers, ISVs, and developers. It's all part of the company's recent "Cloud 2" next-generation SaaS initiative.
The endgame, of course, is to take a larger chunk of the public cloud services market, which Salesforce estimates will reach $55.5 billion by 2014.
This leads to a TalkinCloud prediction for 2011: as the IT world wakes up to the profit potential of the cloud, we're going to be seeing a lot more action in the application frameworks and platforms space.
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