Wednesday Aug 05, 2015

Early Bird registration: The end is near

Happy Wednesday, OPN!

We hope you tuned into this morning's live OPN PartnerCast. It was a great discussion around what's new in Oracle Database Cloud and opportunities for partners.

We also hope that you've secured your spot for Oracle OpenWorld and/or JavaOne 2015. Early Bird registration saves you $500 off the onsite conference price and is available to take advantage of until Sunday, August 16.

There's still a while to go before October 25, but a lot of planning is taking place behind the scenes. Here are just a few things partners have to look forward to at this year's OPN Central @ OpenWorld:

  • Partner keynote
  • OPN AfterDark Reception
  • OPN Lounge activities (did someone say Social Media Rally Station!?)
  • Theater Sessions @ the OPN Lounge
  • Famed OPN AfterDark

We look forward to seeing you this fall.

The OPN Communications team

Wednesday Mar 18, 2015

The Power of Sustainability: Are You Being Recognized?

Leading businesses recognize that environmental responsibility is good business, and that well-structured environmental practices deliver bottom line benefits to people, planet and profits. Providing practical, concrete solutions that help customers with their sustainability initiatives should be part of any technology company’s undertaking.

That’s why we are committed to running our business operations in an environmentally responsible manner. Oracle, in collaboration with our partners, is also committed to the development of products and solutions that support our customer's sustainability-related objectives. 

By taking an environmental stance, many of our customers have reduced their costs and risks, while improving their revenues and brand. They’ve also been recognized for it. To give you a sense of our customers’ missions and success stories, here are two notable companies that are making positive environmental changes in their countries by way of Oracle technology.

Safe Water Kenya deploys life-saving water filters in remote locations

Safe Water Kenya provides families in need, schools and health clinics with sustainable safe-water delivery systems through the use of ecological biosand filters. The company needed to automate its collection of data used to authenticate critical water filter installations deployed in remote locations. In addition, Safe Water Kenya needed help deploying the water filters as well as optimizing the speed and accuracy of data transfer by eliminating handwritten forms, the use of different field recording equipment, and transcribing survey data. All of these processes were a primary cause of manual entry errors.

To help eliminate these challenges, Safe Water Kenya worked with Oracle partner mFrontiers to deploy Oracle WebLogic Server 12c, Oracle Database 12c, and Oracle Mobile Database Server, along with mFinity EMMP, as a scalable end-to-end enterprise mobility solution to rapidly increase visibility into remote installations of life-saving water filters, facilitate water-filter installations, and dramatically increase data integrity.

Since implementing Oracle technology, Safe Water Kenya has leveraged its biosand filters to help the lives of more than 360,000 people through over 61,000 worldwide installations to date by eliminating more than 95 percent of bacteria and viruses. In deployment areas, the filters typically reduce the incidences of diarrhea by more than 50 percent. This is critical in Kenya, where diarrhea from water-borne diseases is a leading cause of the high death rates among children under five.

Thiess minimizes energy consumption through environmental tracking & reporting

Australia-based contract miner Thiess is responsible for all mining activities in the Leighton Holdings Group. Thiess is a large energy user and emitter of greenhouse gases, so it’s no surprise that its environmental information is key to its management tool set.

As the company has grown, the need for accurate, easily-captured energy usage information has risen. In light of this, Thiess worked with JD Edwards partner Ndevr to implement and deploy the JD Edwards’ Environmental Accounting & Reporting (EA&R) module in order to track and report energy use and calculate its GHG emissions. EA&R has enabled Thiess to use the information gathered to assess its energy usage as well as identify opportunities for improving energy performance across the company.

Using JD Edwards solutions, Thiess went from producing one report – which previously took four months – to producing multiple reports instantaneously and as often as needed. Thiess is now generating reports for every site project to identify where the most energy is used and where to take steps to reduce consumption.

Now it’s your turn

These are only two of the many Oracle customers and their partners who have award-winning stories to tell about their sustainable business practices using Oracle products. Are you working with a customer who is using an Oracle product to help with their sustainability initiatives while reducing costs? Perhaps saving energy, gas or paper? For example, your customer may use Oracle’s Agile Product Lifecycle Management to design more eco-friendly products; Oracle Transportation Management to reduce fleet emissions; Oracle Exadata Database Machine to decrease power and cooling needs while increasing database performance; Oracle Business Intelligence to measure and report on environmental impacts, or one of many other Oracle products.

If so, you and your customer may be eligible for the global 2015 Oracle Sustainability Innovation Award, part of the Oracle Excellence Awards program. You can submit a nomination by June 12 on behalf of your customer(s).  The awards will be presented to the winning customers and their partners by a senior Oracle executive at Oracle OpenWorld 2015 in San Francisco.

As a famous Beatle once said, “Out of all those millions and millions of planets floating around there in space, this is our planet, this is our little one, so we just got to be aware of it and take care of it.”

Jon Chorley
Chief Sustainability Officer and Group Vice President, Oracle

Monday Sep 15, 2014

Oracle Database Appliance: Reducing Cost and Complexity for ISVs

Wikibon Project’s Deep Dive into the Value Oracle Database Appliance Delivers to Three Oracle Partners

Since Oracle Database Appliance made its grand debut several years ago, it has fast become a partner and customer favorite. For those of you not familiar with Oracle Database Appliance, it allows users to leverage Oracle Database and other software in one easy to deploy and manage system. In this power-packed appliance, customers get pre-integrated software, hardware, storage and virtualization – everything they need to manage critical database and application workloads in a small footprint.

For Oracle Independent Software Vendor’s (ISVs) and integration partners, Oracle Database Appliance offers the unique opportunity to pair third party or other Oracle software with the appliance to reduce complexity, cost and risk; and ease deployment, upgrades, support and maintenance, a true Solution-In-A-Box.

But, while it’s no secret we think Oracle Database Appliance is a great addition to any datacenter, what really matters is the impact it has on our customers and partners. To that end, Wikibon Project (1), a worldwide community of practitioners, consultants, and researchers dedicated to improving the adoption of technology, recently took a deep dive look into Oracle Database Appliance and how it is being used by three Oracle partners. What they found was universal cost and time to value savings. In the research paper, they noted, “Wikibon believes the strategic business case for Oracle Database Appliance and other single SME converged appliances is overwhelming for ISV’s, integrators, and their customers and will be an essential method for ISVs and integrators to deliver solutions on-site with a cost structure competitive to application-as-a-service cloud providers.” Here are the stories of the partners they interviewed:

Systems Integrator, Re-Quest: Re-Quest is an early Oracle Database Appliance adopter and Platinum-level member in Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN). Re-Quest has been successfully assisting customers around the globe for over 20 years leverage their investment in Oracle Technology assets to gain higher returns on investment, lower total cost of ownership, and measurable improvement in their business processes. Re-Quest was an early believer in the value of integrated systems, noting that fewer integration points equals better value and TCO, less risk, fewer support issues, and easier management. Using Oracle Database Appliance, for example, has helped Re-Quest reduce “the speed to deploy Oracle Real Application Clusters on Oracle Database Appliance by seven times versus a white box server approach” and in regards to support, has led to “20-40 percent fewer one-off calls from customers.”

ISV, Temenos: A Gold-level member of OPN, Temenos delivers scalable, high-performing solutions to meet retail banks’ needs for core processing, regulation and compliance, internet and mobile channels, and reporting. The company has 1,600 installations in more than 150 countries and has invested more than $1B growing its product set from just core banking to include payments, wealth management, business analytics, and channels. With Oracle Database Appliance, Temenos is able to reduce complexity, ease upgrades and speed time to market. Wikibon found that Oracle Database Appliance “enables Temenos’ customers to experience better system resilience, 30-40 percent less time-to-deployment of their business processes, and lower overhead and maintenance with, for instance, a 30 percent reduction in DBA labor.” The company also reported the ability to reduce set-up costs by 3-4 weeks and the ability to deploy its model bank technology to customers and enable them to begin usage in a matter of months vs. the year needed for typical banking solution deployment cycles – significantly reducing costs for its customers.

ISV, Mformation: Mformation enables operators, service providers and enterprises to manage and secure wirelessly connected devices and the applications and services on them, over any wireless network. They currently manage 500 million devices, from mobile to Internet of Things and connected car applications. The Gold-level OPN member recognizes Oracle Database Appliance as a unique opportunity to simplify solution architectures and strongly recommends it to their customers. The research paper notes that, “When scalability for dynamic handling of transactions is critical, Mformation turns to the Oracle Database Appliance for efficiently delivering system resources. When an operator wants to increase the frequency of mobile phone updates, for instance, the Mformation system has to be able to scale rapidly to handle an immediate 2X or greater increase in volume and velocity of transactions and updates.”

Simplifying IT and enabling our customers and partners to innovate and succeed is what inspires Oracle everyday to keep enabling you with great technology. And while these examples are great, we want to hear about you. How is Oracle Database Appliance helping transform your business?

1.    Wikibon Project, “The Value of Oracle Database Appliance (ODA) for ISVs,” David Floyer, August 21, 2014

Monday Apr 21, 2014

Solving the Data Growth Problem – Part 1

If you're a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

Now let’s apply this tenet to big data. Data growth is a primary driver of application issues and proves to be a pressing challenge faced by organizations. A logical conclusion might be that adding more disk space can solve the problem; however this method often proves costly and inefficient.

Enter Oracle Partners. Our partners are in a great position because they’re trusted advisors with an opportunity to take an integrated approach to addressing data growth. Partners don’t have to simply sell more storage or licenses. They can identify the issue and choose the proper solution.

Several Oracle approaches to easing the influx of data:

  • Leverage the features of Oracle Database such as Automatic Data Optimization with Heat Map technology as well as Advanced Compression option to compress and tier data at a higher density and maximize resource efficiency. In particular, Hybrid Columnar Compression (HCC) can compress data 10X-50X, reducing storage capacity, footprint, and TCO. 
  • Move your systems to Oracle Exadata Database Machine to free up space in existing storage environments for general storage use; see our January blog post on HCC to compress data in the Exadata environment;
  • Address non-database data with tiered storage; more on this topic in Part 2.

So for now – put away the hammer – remember that adding more storage capacity isn’t the only solution to combat the rapid influx of data into your systems. We believe the priority should be on looking at storage issues from Oracle Database and taking advantage of free features like HCC, which decrease storage requirements and improve query performance in real customer environments. The ultimate choice is yours.

Until Part 2!

- The OPN Comms Team

Wednesday Oct 09, 2013

Extreme Performance

Oracle Team USA’s performance in the 34th America’s Cup represents the greatest come-from-behind victory in organized sports in modern history. With all due praise to the Team USA sailors and their world-class athleticism, the Cup was also a victory for Oracle technology.

To see why, let’s take a quick look at what Oracle Team USA’s AC72 was packing.

First, the “device.” The boat bristled with 300–400 Java Embedded sensors generating 30,000 datapoints per second—up to 200 GB of data each day. The sensors measured variables from boat speed and wind angle to winch loads and pressure on the gennaker foresail.

From there, the data fed in real-time over 3G to servers on the team’s support boat, and to a database back on the dock. Information specific to each sailor’s role also streamed to wearable and boat-mounted monitors, which the team could check to make quick adjustments to optimize the boat’s performance.

Meanwhile, back in the performance hub, Oracle Database on Oracle Exadata Database Machine provided crucial information the team needed to win, combing through performance metadata each day to help increase the boat’s speed.

When the team came in from the water, they were able to jump straight into the debrief room and analyze the performance metrics, as well as video. They got an objective sense of how the boat was running, which validated what they felt or experienced out on the water.

Legacy analytics systems took 30 to 40 minutes to collect, import, and run the reports—a long time to wait for sailing team members who have already put in a full day. But this year’s platform let them get the data while the boat’s feel was still fresh. "If you wait until the next day, they've lost a lot of information that was fresh in their memories,” says Asim Khan, performance database programmer and director of IT for Oracle Team USA. “So getting that time from 40 minutes to 10 is critical, and that's where Oracle Exadata Database Machine made a huge difference."

This constant feedback translated into constant adjustments to the boat. After every trial and test, the Oracle design team made data-validated modifications that effectively turned the AC72 into a different vessel each day it was on the water. So in a way, it was more like a dynamic, living system than a static object.

And this was one of the unstated victories—this unanticipated glimpse into the future. Oracle technology at the 34th America’s Cup showed us what the burgeoning “Internet of Things” is all about: a dynamic ecosystem in which connected, data-collecting devices interact with a platform that crunches terabytes of unstructured information into recommendations that drive world-changing performance.

Read more about Oracle Team USA's technology, and capitalize on this positive momentum by sharing these videos of Oracle's extreme performance on and off the water with your customers.