SAP Rolls Out a New Architecture

SAP is seeking to remedy a knock against its monolithic enterprise software with the new mySAP Technology architecture that lets IT managers more easily integrate in third-party software.

LOS ANGELES -- SAP AG is seeking to remedy a long-standing knock against its monolithic enterprise software by introducing a new architecture that will let IT organizations more easily integrate in third-party software with its enterprise applications.

The new mySAP Technology infrastructure, which was introduced this morning at the SAP TechEd 2001 conference here, provides a platform for integration applications and Web services from vendors whose software complies with a variety of open industry standards.

As earlier reported by eWEEK Online, the centerpiece of the new infrastructure is the SAP Web Application Server that supports not only the Walldorf, Germany, companys ABAP technology, but also Sun Microsystems Inc.s J2EE (Java 2 Enterprise Edition). It will also provide connectivity with Microsoft Corp.s .Net technology when it becomes available, SAP officials said.

Hasso Plattner, SAPs co-chairman and CEO, said at a press conference that the SAP Web Application Server will provide a complete development environment for creating Web-based business applications that can integrate with applications from rivals like Oracle Corp., J.D. Edwards & Co. and Siebel Systems Inc. The key is adherence to industry standards, he said.

"These [standards] are what we use; they are the basis [for the infrastructure], they are not window dressing," Plattner said.

mySAP Technology also brings together two generations of reporting tools by coalescing a data integration hub and a user integration hub.

Version 3.0 of mySAP Business Intelligence, which SAP also introduced, for the first time provides data integration from third-party software. It also features a Wide Distribution Mechanism that gives an HTML interface to its thousands of prepackaged reports. This new interface enables users to send reports to a wider array of colleagues than previous versions of mySAP BI, which presented reports in an Excel spreadsheet format, officials said.

In addition, mySAP Technology fully integrates iViews, a portal-building technology that allows users to customize business rules in the creation of applications used through the mySAP Enterprise Portal.

While the basic mySAP Technology is available now, support for J2EE and ABAP in the Web Application Server wont be available until the second quarter of next year. Similarly, new capabilities for capturing shared business semantics and maintaining integration and collaboration knowledge as part of the SAP Markets exchange infrastructure will be available in the second quarter of 2002, officials said.

Additional reporting by John S. McCright