BigLever Software Establishes an Open Industry Ecosystem for Product Line Engineering with the Release of Gears 7.0

Gears 7.0 Provides the API for Systems and Software Engineering Tool Makers to Become Part of the Ecosystem by Delivering Unified Bridge Solutions for Their Customers and User Communities

AUSTIN, Texas – June 4, 2012 – BigLever Software™, the leading provider of systems and software product line engineering (PLE) solutions, announced today the release of Gears 7.0, a new version of the company's industry-standard PLE Lifecycle Framework. With the release of Gears 7.0, BigLever is establishing an open industry ecosystem of world-class tool providers – including developers of commercial, open source, customized, integrated or proprietary Application Lifecycle Management and Product Lifecycle Management tools – to further catalyze the proliferation of PLE. The centerpiece of Gears 7.0 is a new API, the PLE Bridge API, that enables engineering tool makers to become part of the PLE ecosystem by making their tools "product line aware" and thereby ready to be included in the unified PLE solutions used by their customers or user communities.

Companies across a spectrum of industries are leveraging the power of PLE to change the fundamentals of how they create, evolve, deliver and compete with their product lines. Leading aerospace & defense and automotive companies are using PLE approaches and BigLever's Gears PLE Lifecycle Framework as the technology foundation for highly successful mega-scale PLE deployments. The deployments in these sectors are driving the expansion of PLE across other industries, such as consumer electronics, medical, computer systems, telecom, alternative energy and e-commerce.

"The product lifecycle is in need of a 'Switzerland' where content and artifacts can be exchanged at a high level across tools and engineering disciplines. By publishing an API, BigLever is opening an important back channel for sharing high level artifacts at the product family level," said Tony Baer, principal analyst for Ovum.

"As PLE has 'crossed he chasm' from a niche approach into mainstream practice in the systems and software engineering industry, we have seen the demand for tool integrations with the Gears PLE Framework skyrocket," said Dr. Charles Krueger, CEO of BigLever Software. "The PLE Bridge API opens up an exciting new PLE ecosystem of partners, vendors, customers and integrators to meet this demand and to enable any and all engineering tool makers to join the PLE revolution."

About Gears 7.0

The Gears Framework allows engineering organizations to establish an automated, feature-based systems and software engineering production system, much like a manufacturing factory, enabling them to develop, deliver and evolve an entire product line portfolio through each stage of the engineering lifecycle – from requirements to design, development and testing – with much higher degrees of efficiency, productivity, and profitability than have been possible before. With Gears 7.0 and the PLE Bridge API, engineering tool makers can create PLE bridges that connect to the Gears Framework and make their tools "product line aware". Providing a PLE bridge to the Gears Framework enables their tools to work synchronously with other "product line aware" tools across the full engineering lifecycle.

BigLever also provides the Gears Bridge SDK, a companion development kit that delivers the complete package of documentation, examples and support materials that tool developers need to quickly and easily build consistent, compatible PLE bridges. Tool developers also receive the benefits of BigLever's Bridge Partner Program and Bridge Validation process. Working in collaboration with BigLever, tool developers can demonstrate – through a series of validation steps – that their bridge integration fully supports the PLE capabilities defined in the Gears Bridge SDK. Validated bridge providers can display the BigLever Validated Bridge logo, in order to clearly convey that their bridge product fully supports the industry's best and most successful PLE practices.