"No respectable developer wants to be on Salesforce.com. This could drive even more developers [to Engine Yard's platform]," said Tom Mornini, Engine Yard CTO and co-founder, in an email. "Ruby is the language for the cloud. If you are building apps, and you are building on the cloud, you have to build with Ruby," Mornini said. The deal validates that, he said. "However, both Salesforce.com and Heroku's multi-tenancy approach is the wrong way to go. We believe virtualization is a better value for any type of company that has applications."
The acquisition, said analyst Al Hilwa of IDC, is about Salesforce.com's desire to build a fuller platform. "Firms that provide a hosted platform for Ruby represented the kind of new application workloads that Salesforce.com hopes to attract to its own cloud offering. In theory, Heroku customers will be candidates for Database.com, and so the synergies for cross-selling are one of the main attractions," Hilwa said.
Heroku CEO Byron Sebastian argued that Ruby presents a more contemporary option for developers than Java. "I think there's a lot that we've learned over the last 10 years in terms of what's needed. Ruby sort of comes from that new generation of programming languages, frameworks and, frankly, of developers," Sebastian said.
Also at the conference, Salesforce and BMC announced RemedyForce, a cloud offering for IT service management. RemedyForce will handle incident, asset, and problem management and will feature a self-service portal.
"What I'm really excited about with RemedyForce is it's really the next strategic cloud for our customers," Benioff said.
Heroku and RemedyForce become the seventh and eighth clouds under Salesforce's domain. The others are Sales Cloud 2, for sales automation; Service Cloud 2, for customer support; Chatter, for collaboration; Jigsaw, for data quality; Database.com, for database services; and the Force.com platform, for deploying business applications.
Salesforce.com cited on Wednesday five cloud services as comprising Force.com 2, the new version of Force.com. These include Appforce, for building collaborative applications; Siteforce, for building Web sites without code; VMforce, for Java applications; ISVforce, for ISVs to build multi-tenant applications; and Heroku. Force.com 2, the company said, offers an application development platform featuring forms, processes, analytics, social, and mobile features on Salesforce.com infrastructure.