Ellison Details Fusion Apps, Touts Exadata Server

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2009-10-15 Print this article Print

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and rock star Roger Daltrey help Oracle CEO Larry Ellison wrap up the Oracle OpenWorld conference, which attracted about 35,000 people. Ellison delivers details on the Fusion Applications suite, which runs on Oracle's Fusion Middleware and Sun's Java.

SAN FRANCISCO-Oracle CEO and founder Larry Ellison, in the final keynote of Oracle OpenWorld Oct. 14 here at the Moscone Center, dazzled attendees with unexpected guests onstage, then served up some news: details about the company's software-as-a-service-enabled Fusion Applications middleware suite, something enterprise developers have been waiting to hear about for months.

The surprise guests were California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and former Who lead singer Roger Daltrey. Daltrey performed with his own band on the same bill with rock group Aerosmith at the conference's closing party that evening.

The Fusion Applications suite, which runs on Oracle's Fusion Middleware and Sun's Java, is a next-generation group of ERP and business applications designed for virtualized systems. The company described Oracle Fusion Applications on its site as, "service-enabled enterprise applications that can be easily integrated into service-oriented architecture," such as financial transaction systems.

The built-in advantages these applications will have over those of competitors, Ellison said, is that Oracle will automatically monitor and ensure guaranteed service levels.

"Fusion Apps are built to be SAAS- or cloud-ready so we are committing to their service level, which means we have to have a way to monitor their performance to make sure we are delivering the promised level of performance," Ellison said.

The first Fusion Apps suite will include modules for financial management, human capital management, sales and marketing, supply chain management, project management, procurement management, and governance, risk and compliance, he said.

However, after firing up the crowd by explaining all the whiz-bang features and advantages of the new suite, Ellison casually mentioned that it would be available at some point "next year." That's when a number of attendees turned to each other, rolled their eyes and threw their hands up in disappointment.

In addition to explaining Fusion Apps, Ellison introduced a new support portal to help users with similar configurations anticipate problems and fix and prevent technical issues in a collaborative manner.

"Once we fix something, why not put it out there and let everybody else who's doing the same thing learn from the experience?" Ellison asked.

To allay fears that Oracle may be too focused on future development to think about its legacy-system customers, Ellison assured IT decision makers that Oracle will continue to support legacy middleware-at least for the next 10 years.

"We understand users have enormous investments in things like e-business, PeopleSoft and JD Edwards [applications], and so we will continue to enhance those for the next decade," Ellison told the conference. "I think we are big enough of a company to maintain [the] software users have today and the software they will buy in the future. You will have a choice to move to the new applications when you want to."

Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on Salesforce.com and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and DevX.com and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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