The PalmSource 2000 developer conference opens this week in California.

Product and technology announcements there will be aimed primarily at a corporate audience, with a special emphasis on server-based platforms that turn the handheld into a thin client (an unexpandable computer that is connected to a server).

WaveLink will launch a version of its WaveLink Studio application development platform that supports use of the Palm OS in a wide area network (WAN) environment.

Translation WaveLink Studio will translate most common programming languages into Palm OS applications. Supported languages and development environments include Visual Basic, Visual C++, Java, PowerBuilder, Visual FoxPro and Delphi. The applications running on the server can be accessed through any network-linked Palm, such as the Palm VII, using its wireless Web-Clipping technology, or with a Palm OS licensee Symbol Technology device.

Bringing Visual Basic programmers into the Palm OS fold is something Palm officials appear eager to do.

Michael Mace, Palm's chief technology officer, said: "We've made tremendous ground getting Visual Basic support for Palm. And, we're close to announcing some additional steps in that direction."

Security with "enterprise-level muscle" is being promised by NTRU, who is introducing its PalmSource Security Toolkit.