It was a tremendous amount of fun to see all of the new announcements, innovations, and visions of the future at Oracle OpenWorld 2017. From Slack, to AI & Chatbots, to Blockchain and more, one can see Oracle is moving towards a comprehensive, open, and exciting future.
In fact, as I walked around the OpenWorld demo grounds last week, one exhibit in particular caught my attention. No, there weren't any free t-shirts, or drones, or beer given away at this demo booth. Instead, positioned in a corner of the Innovation Studio in Moscone North, sat a large lacquered table supporting several miniature robots, small plastic boxes with etched QR codes, a faerie-sized wooden door, and a tablet with facial recognition software. Nearby, a large monitor displayed a live Facebook Messenger conversation, streamed from a mobile phone, between a person and a chatbot.
What was this peculiar demo and why did it fascinate me so much? Part of the attraction, admittedly, was that I was intently curious to see what could possibly fit through that miniature door. Was one of the robots going to open it, or drive through it? (The answer to both questions was "no," but both the door and the robot still ended up being used in very cool ways.) More importantly, I became fascinated with the demo when I learned about the use case it was trying to solve, how well it worked, and which technologies it used.
Carlos Zarate, Carlos Casares, Jesus Brasero, and Jesus Guerra (left to right, above) belong to Oracle's WEDO team, a group of about 20 Oracle Spain employees that focus on implementing new "Digital" business models. The WEDO team takes pride in understanding how to bridge the gap between business requirements and technology in order to define innovative use cases that span the entire Oracle stack. In this particular scenario, WEDO decided to create a demo around a hospitality use case and used Oracle Intelligent Bots as the focal point. The demo takes a user through a full "hospitality flow," from booking a hotel room through a chatbot, to checking in and asking the bot to unlock your door, to ordering room service and having it delivered via robot, to requesting room maintenance, and finally to checking out and paying the hotel bill. Although the demo uses Oracle Intelligent Bots as its core component, the WEDO team managed to incorporate 21 different Oracle PaaS services and 6 different Oracle SaaS services, proving that Oracle Intelligent Bots is not only a completely open bot development environment, but also that it can play an a central and critical role in any digital engagement strategy.
Check out the embedded video below to see the entire demo: