Datagistics boosts web performance

Software vendor Datagistics is touting software it claims can dramatically accelerate web downloads, even when the data includes already-compressed files.

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By  Jon Tullett Published  February 5, 2001

A new software vendor, Datagistics, is touting software it claims can dramatically accelerate web downloads.

At the server side, Datagistic’s software shapes the data into more efficient streams, which are then sent to a browser plug-in at the client side. The Datagistics RAPID (Random Access Para-Integration of Data) technology isn't quite compression, but data manipulation, said Michael Lalonde, chairman and chief executive of Datagistics.

In typical compression schemes, an algorithm hunts for patterns or repeated data and either eliminates or replaces them, shrinking their size and making them easier to transmit and store. The compressed data can be later decompressed to reproduce the original message or file. Normally, however, there is some finite limit to which data can be compressed.

What Datagistics does is to "enforce" additional compression into the data-stream by rearranging the data, effectively compressing already-compressed files and Secure Socket Layer e-commerce transactions alike. The technology requires a small Windows-compatible client application that's less than one megabyte in size, Lalonde said.

Datagistics claims to be able to accelerate relatively slow 30kbps modem connections to broadband performance using their software. Research firm KPMG conducted tests on beta versions of the RAPID technology and said “the effective transmission speed is comparable to most DSL services with no loss of quality. We felt these performance improvements were significant, given the current speed of dial-up Internet communications services and the allure that graphical content has to most Internet web sites.”

KPMG’s performance figures showed a best performance of 11.8 times the download speed, in line with Datagistic’s promises of from 50 to 90 percent increases.

Datagistics plans to release the software to the market in March.

The software may breathe new life into slow modem connections in regions where DSL is not currently available. "It's extremely impressive," said Tim Bajarin, principal at US-based analyst firm Creative Strategies. "I thought what they had was very significant, with a lot of potential. It's one of those products that hits a real sweet spot where there's market demand."

Lalonde and his executives staff are trying to pitch the new technology to a wide variety of vendors, to router manufacturers, traditional server and storage makers, and content companies like ISPs.

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