Thursday May 07, 2009

Congratulations OpenSSO -- “Best innovation” Award

Just wanted to pass along the news that OpenSSO has been awarded the Best Innovation Award by Kuppinger Cole

In the category “Best innovation”, the award went to the OpenSSO initative, founded and supported by Sun Microsystems. Their project, OpenSSO Fedlet has provided a lean solution for the Identity Federation.

Congratulations to Daniel, Pat and team.

Monday Jun 09, 2008

A big day for SOA

We have been feverishly working on the next release of our JCAPS product and I am really happy to report that today is the day that we announce it to the world. Although we are just announcing it today, we have had many customers using it already and making sure it is ready for prime time. The press release has all the details but for me the these 3 features excited me the most:

1) Built from Open Source

JCAPS 6 is built from the OpenESB community. The importance of this is two fold -- for the JCAPS customer it ensures that the product is more open and mitigates the risk of vendor lockin, for the potential customer or general developer out there they can use the Enterprise Service Buss features of OpenESB, knowing that if they find the product indispensable (and I am sure they will!) they can migrate up to the full featured version of JCAPS. As a side benefit for Sun and our sales team it reduces the sales cycle.

2) Powerful update to the tested and popular JCAPS 5

For existing customers this is the "must have release" since we have been listening to your feedback and have added additional features like support for BPEL 2, event notification and JBI (reduced vendor lock-in). For prospects and customers waiting for the "right" SOA platform, this is it. The feedback from our early access customers has been fantastic, but don't take my word for it, give it a try by downloading OpenESB today and giving it a whirl!

3) Focussed on real customer pain points

SOA gets a bad name because it doesn't solve world hunger (wish it did, but it doesn't!) But what it does a fantastic job at solving is the  "single view of the customer problem" -- see my posting on Sibel for me information.
Basically the product allows for the real time consolidation of master data (like customer, patient, supplier, citizen, product, etc) providing businesses with the tools needed to solve one of the biggest challenges today i.e. customer retention and acquisition. This new product is in the Master Data Management market and is aptly called Sun's Master Data Management Suite.

Let me encourage you again to read the release, download and use the OpenESB and let me know what you think of the product.

Monday May 12, 2008

Are you an Identity Hero?

Do you have what it takes? Do you really think that you can beat the Sarbox monster? We know that the real world is ripe with real identity thieves and villians, but we also know that you will enjoy the game online before deploying a real identity solution to your enterprise.

Enjoy, and let us know how you do! 

Thursday Apr 24, 2008

Latest news on the Fedlet

Thursday Apr 10, 2008

CIO Priorities 2008

I was reading Larry Dignan's blog on ZDNet this morning and the found the discussion on what Business are expecting from their IT really interesting.

This really mirrors what I have been hearing from our customers around cutting costs, but at the same time attracting and retaining customers. Quite a tough act to follow since fixing business processes, and attracting and retaining customers probably are on the "increase cost" side of the equation. So then how do these CIO's reduce cost?

Speaking to our customers they are looking at Sun to create disruptive technologies that allow them to reduce costs while providing increased functionality -- one tough requirement to follow. We continually innovate to make this requirement a reality. Consider Java Enterprise System -- where we take a complete pre-integrated middleware stack and price it on a per-employee basis -- yes, no machines to count, sockets to count, etc. -- Disruption of pricing models. Or consider our GlassFish Application Server -- where we provide a complete Java EE application server that is freely deployable.

So if you like the CIO's cited in Gartner's study are trying to reduce costs but gain and retain new customers, I recommend you consider Sun's portfolio.

Tuesday Apr 01, 2008

Accenture and Sun Unveil New Solutions for Enterprise-Wide Security

If you have not read the news, better read it now!

Sun has partnered with Accenture to develop pre-built solutions that make it easier and less costly for businesses and governments to protect their information systems from growing security threats. Built using Sun's identity management and service-oriented architecture (SOA) technologies, these solutions help provide stronger security, improve compliance and risk management, and offer a simplified deployment method to speed implementations, and reduce cost and complexity.

If you want more details listen to his great podcast on the topic.

-Mark
 

Monday Mar 24, 2008

Do you need a FedLet?

You know when Daniel posts a blog like this, there can only be something really cool and exciting about to happen.. Unfortunately he has not shared the news with me, but I was hoping that by driving enough traffic and comments to him he might spill the beans!

Come on Daniel.. what is a FedLet? Or is it a Fedlet, fedlet, FEDlet, FEDLET, ....

-Mark

Friday Mar 21, 2008

Obama Passport Breach

I was reading the news yesterday and this morning on the case of certain contractors accessing Obama's passport records and the firing of certain individuals involved. What was really interesting to me, as we consider the case as it has been reported, is that the individuals involved had the correct access levels to get this information. So in technical parlance they had been authenticated to the system, they were authorized to access passport records, but it was a business policy that was violated -- no data access for non-official business

I wonder how many businesses have not even considered this a potential risk and compliance issue? The good news is that with Sun identity offerings and our latest product Sun Role Manager we can help customers address these needs.

 Update: Now it seems that it is all candidates... I wonder what else these contractors were doing? Mmmm...

-Mark

Monday Mar 10, 2008

Customers...

I have just returned after spending 3 fantastic days at our Customer Advisory Council, in Florida. Let me start by saying how humbled I was that very senior executives would take 3 days out of their excruciating schedule to be away from family and their jobs to meet with us. Thanks just doesn't do justice to the gratitude and respect we at Sun have for these invaluable customers.

We covered a lot in these 3 days, from product roadmaps and tactical plans to strategic directions and portfolio gaps. We had some really frank discussions that cannot be captured in this blog, but I thought it might be interesting to discuss the trends I saw at this meeting...

  • Open Source -- Every customer is committed to open source, not because of any religious zeal, but rather that this is the way that adoption occurs. They see, like Sun does, that open source is a means to an end. By open sourcing products it increases their adoption by users, partners and perhaps more significantly for this audience by service providers that will be doing more and more coding. It really is about building a robust and thriving community that will increase adoption and knowledge of the product. For the customer this is key to them finding resources that know and can use the product.
  • Paying for Open Source -- every customer at the CAC without exception wanted to pay for the open source offering for support. Not for simple "brake-fix" support, but for patch support and indemnification. They saw Sun standing behind the product and being there 24x7 to help them with any problem they had as a huge value add.   This was additional proof that the open source strategy that we at Sun have embarked upon is the winning strategy. Those vendors who ignore the open source trend will be left behind polishing that proverbial proprietary apple till it is rotten inside.
  • Offshore Development -- another interested trend. Most of the customers used offshore development for coding. They either used Sun's, another service provider or their own skilled resources as architects for their product, but they used or wanted to use "cheaper" resources for coding.
  • Information Risk Management -- every customer had either already deployed or where in the process of deploying an identity solution. The acquisition that we just did of Vaau was particularly interesting on how that bolsters Sun's leadership position in the Governance Risk and Compliance Arena.
  • Consolidation -- most of the customers were in the process of consolidating data centers to simplify operations and reduce costs. Sun's new xVM strategy was very interesting since it allows not just consolidation but increased utilization.
  • Service Oriented Architecture -- All customers had embarked down a SOA route, but few viewed this as a technology issue. They really viewed it as a new way of development (or perhaps a new discipline that created reusable services) The hype of SOA had not influenced their development, indeed some of them had not even implemented an Enterprise Service Bus (like OpenESB) but were ensuring that point to point SOA integration occurred. Others had gone further down the SOA route, but only when there was distinct business benefit.
  • Buying Stacks not Point Products -- Another interesting trend that again validates Sun's strategy is that most of these customers were sold on Sun's products to fix a particular problem, be it Single Sign-on, Identity Management, Single Customer View and the like, but they bought into Sun's application infrastructure they purchased Java Enterprise System (JES). The JES model and philosophy of simple pricing, the sum is greater than the parts, and complete stack is what made the deal.
  • Vendor Assessment=Replacement! -- Some vendors go into their customers and make them spend endless hours and resources documenting where software is being used and how many licenses they are bough. They are really like vultures hoping that they can extract a few more dollars from their customer base. Luckily at Sun we don't do this, and it was this exact practice that inspired the JES model of simple subscription pricing. What was enlightening is that as soon as a vendor starts this assessment the customer looks for ways to replace them. Why waste time with a "vulture vendor"

There was much more that we learned from this invaluable event, but unfortunately a lot of it cannot be shared on a public blog, but rest assured that the advice and direction given will find it into our products and our strategy... Thanks again to our customers for giving us the opportunity to listen.
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Musings from Mark Herring at Sun...

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