Oracle is transitioning from its message of suite versus best of breed promulgated at past AppsWorld events. This year, the message at AppsWorld in San Diego is integration, and the recognition that companies may in fact have applications outside the Oracle E-Business Suite.
To this end, Oracle an-nounced today its namesake Customer Data Hub that gives users that operate disparate applications a homogeneous view of their customer data. At the same time, the company announced enhancements to its upcoming 11i.10 E-Business Suite that includes a "greatly enhanced" integration layer and upgraded functionality for integrating business processes.
The idea with the Customer Data Hub is to provide a central data store that cleanses and enriches data that is culled from a variety of sources, including outside applications. The Hub is essentially two separate pieces: the hub itself, which runs on the latest version of the E-Business Suite technology, the 9.R2 version of Oracles database and the 1022 version of its application server; and an integration server that enables companies to model and integrate public processes, according to Cliff Godwin, senior vice president of application technology.
"The Customer Hub uses the existing data model and all its inter-faces, so it has pre-packaged applications and a data library to cleanse and enrich data," said Godwin, in San Diego.
In addition to data synchronization, users have the ability to build their own applications using the Customer Hub, to interact with the Hub. The idea here is essentially to bring in more information to support reporting capabilities, versus true application development, Godwin explained.
"Where we see more focus is people who have a number of different systems [and they want] to synchronize data," said Godwin.
Separately, the upgrades included in 11i.10, due mid-2004, provide companies the capability to support business-to-business integration, application-to-application integration, and business process integration.
This works through a number of paths. With version 10 Oracle will expose over 800 integration points as business events and natively support more than 150 standards based OAG [Oracle Applications Group] defined business objects, like how to define a purchase order, officials said.
At the same time, the upgraded suite provides an integration interface repository that catalogs the APIs [application program interfaces] of the E-Business Suite – a move that will provide a single definition for the interfaces.
The way the third party integration works with 11i.10 is by leveraging Oracles 10G application server, released in December, which includes adapters, data translation and transformation, business process integration and business activity monitoring as part of the package.