ActiveState Expands Platform-as-a-Service Cloud Tech for Perl

By Sean Kerner (Send Email)
Posted Jun 15, 2011


Tools vendor ActiveState is acquiring cloud startup Phenora which develops a Perl cloud platform. The Phenora platform will complement ActiveState's Stackato Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) effort which was announced in May. Perl cloud vendor run by a 15 year old entrepreneur gets snapped up.

Among the many things that make Phenora an interesting company is the fact that is it run by its 15-year-old founder, Daniil Kulchenko, who is still in high school.

"From the first point we started talking to Daniil, we realized that his talent and knowledge were not bound by his age," Bart Copeland, President & CEO at ActiveState, told InternetNews.com. "In fact, as we were negotiating the acquisition, he showed maturity beyond his years."

That said Copeland noted that the only issue for ActiveState was that fact that Kulchenko is still in school, so he can't work full-time yet. In terms of how much ActiveState is paying for Phenora, Copeland declined to disclose the acquisition amount.

As to why ActiveState is acquiring Phenora, Copeland noted that his company was interested in the technology that will help him get to market faster with a deeper feature set for ActiveState's cloud offerings. He added that Phenona possesses a unique combination of talent and experience with Perl, deploying to the cloud, and running a service, all strengths that ActiveState was interested in adding to their bench.

"Stackato, our enterprise cloud platform, is currently in developer preview, so we are getting early feedback," Copeland said. "What Phenona has built was not just a platform, but a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) as well, which includes a security and multi-tenancy model that fits well into what we've built, and will be able to leverage in our offerings."

Copeland explained that Phenona was built using open source components, such as MySQL, Mojolicious, Reddit - but Phenona itself is not an open source project.

The larger question behind Phenona though is whether or not there actually is a need to make Perl ready for the cloud. According to Copeland, it's a resounding yes as his company sees continued demand for Perl.

"Based on our business, we know that enterprises have a lot of applications they've built that rely on Perl, and they have staff with Perl skills available, so they now want to port those existing applications to the cloud," Copeland said. "Perl has always been known as the glue of the internet, plus it's a fast and elegant language, so why not use Perl in the cloud?"

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals.

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