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Oracle OpenWorld focusing on Grid

Oracle hosts its OpenWorld business and technology conference in San Francisco this week. The focus of the five-day event, which opened Sunday and runs through Thursday, will be Oracle's ongoing grid computing strategy, launched earlier this year with the release of the Oracle 10g product line.

'Oracle 10g has had one of the fastest uptakes of any release, ever,' Robert Shimp, VP of technology marketing at Oracle, tells ADT, 'and there will be lots of customers coming to the show to talk specifically about their grid projects.'

Among other things, attendees will hear about development and deployment tools that enable management of applications and information on the grid, including refinements of Oracle's BPEL process engine, activity monitoring, new BI tools for dealing with OLAP and relational databases, Shimp says.

The company also plans to talk more about new data hubs, first announced at the release the Oracle 11i e-business suite, earlier this year. That was the first of a series of data hubs Oracle expects to release at the show, Shimp says. The hubs will 'provide customers with a very efficient and powerful way to manage key business information,' he adds.

There's also a lot of pre-conference buzz around Oracle's new content management server, code-named 'Tsunami.' Oracle will be rolling out its enterprise content management strategy and roadmap at the show, Shimp says. With Tsunami, Oracle plans to deliver a complete file and records management solution designed to be enterprise scaleable and easy to use.

'We see that as the key to opening up the market for relational databases and the unstructured content management area,' Shimp says. Most data is unstructured, Shimp points out. Only about 20 percent of enterprise information resides in databases. 'I've always said that our biggest competitor is the filing cabinet,' Shimp says.

The company also plans to unveil a re-packaged app server suite. Oracle will now allow customers to purchase individual components from its integrated platform. The Oracle portal, or the identity management technology, for example, will be available separately, Shimp says.

Oracle is expecting the largest turnout in the event's 20-plus-year history (the first show took place in Boston in 1983). The Redwood Shores, Calif.-based company is combining its OpenWorld tech conference with its AppsWorld business applications show, taking over, not only the usual north-south facilities at San Francisco's Moscone Center, but also the newly opened west wing. The product demo area alone will be about the size of a football field, Shimp says. Along with the usual IT audience, event planners are expecting thousands of Oracle line-of-business customers to attend.

'Combining the conferences gives us a single venue to present a complete picture of all our products and technologies,' Shimp says. The show will feature more than 600 technical sessions, the majority of which will be presented by customers, Shimp says. The show will also feature an 'industry day,' held Monday, Dec. 6, which will highlight 15 industries where Oracle technologies and applications have been deployed.

This year's keynote lineup includes Dell chairman Michael Dell, Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, and Sun Microsystems chief exec Scott McNealy, among others. Oracle's CEO, Larry Ellison, and a number of Oracle 'visionaries' will also take the stage. More information on Oracle OpenWorld San Francisco can be found at: http://www.oracle.com/openworld/sanfrancisco/conference/keynotes.html.

About the Author

John K. Waters is a freelance writer based in Silicon Valley. He can be reached at john@watersworks.com.

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