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Tool Markets You Don't Even Know About

Back when I reviewed Nevron's Diagram for .NET, I wrote in a blog post that it took some pressure off of me when I reviewed a unique product. As I poked around in the field, though, I found that there were any number of diagramming tools available. This is why I never say, "This is the best product." I just try to assess the product I'm reviewing on its own merits.

In fact, there are markets with competing products that I didn't even knew existed. Among diagramming tools, in addition to Nevron's Diagram for .NET, there's also yWorks Diagramming Components for .NET, SyncFusion Essential Diagram, and a variety of tools for .NET, WPF and other environments from MindFusion. And there are more out there.

Spellcheckers are another field with multiple competitors, including major players like ComponentOne with its standalone product IntelliSpell, suites from Infragistics and Telerik with spellchecking components, and lots of specialized companies like Keyoti with its RapidSpell Desktop .NET and SpellCheck with its line of products.

There are markets I didn't even know about that feature multiple players. I didn't realize that signature capture was a market until I found Bennet-Tec's Web Signature product. It competes against, for instance, Topaz Systems SigPlus Pro line and CIC's suite (which goes way beyond just capturing signature to managing providing servers for managing authorization/authentication workflows). And that's not getting into companies offering products to implement biometric authentication like fingerprints.

The tools market is sufficiently varied (and odd) that this week I turned to Mark Driver, vice president at Gartner Research, for some understanding. Since we'd just reviewed one of Telerik's suites, I went beyond asking about the general Visual Studio/.NET toolspace to look into the component suite market segment. Here are links to the first and second Q&A blog posts with Mark.

Posted by Peter Vogel on 06/03/2010

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