SAS has become a member of Eclipse, a broad consortium of software development vendors working together to help support and promote a universal tools integration platform.

Rich Main, director of Java development environments for SAS, was elected to represent the company on the Eclipse board of stewards.

As the largest privately held software company in the world, SAS says it has long advocated and supported the need for open standards and designs that address multiplatform environments, thus ensuring its customers have the flexibility to deploy applications in the environment that matches their business needs.

SAS is actively involved in numerous standards organizations, including Data Mining Group, Global Grid Forum, Java Community Process, Object Management Group and XML/A Council.

By joining the Eclipse consortium, SAS says it will assist in the community effort to create and enhance an open, enterprise-class development environment for the Java and J2EE platforms.

“SAS is pleased to participate as a member of Eclipse, and we will play an active role in fostering tool interoperability and integration within the Eclipse framework,” said Keith Collins, senior vice president and chief technology officer at SAS. “Our commitment to open standards and experience with enterprise business intelligence software will ensure that Eclipse users can easily utilize the full analytical power of SAS software for their applications.”

Eclipse’s open platform allows tool vendors to use a plug-in architecture that creates an easy-to-use, integrated development environment. With Eclipse’s Java development tools, users have integration with SAS’ suite of warehousing, analytics and business intelligence solutions.

Main of SAS joins members from IBM, Intel, HP, Red Hat, Fujitsu and other companies on the Eclipse board of stewards. The board will hold its next quarterly meeting Sept. 3 in Chicago.