What is Oracle WebCenter? (Part 1)
By vince.casarez on Jan 11, 2010
I've seen a set of posts recently where users are trying to come up with an easy way to describe WebCenter Suite (and more specifically WebCenter Framework & Spaces), how it can be used, and different customer use cases. So I'll provide a series of posts starting at the top level and then drilling down to each of these other areas. Here goes...
I want to first start with Oracle's overall vision and direction around Fusion Middleware 11g to set the context for Oracle WebCenter, User Interaction, and Portals.
There are three strategic elements to Oracle's vision and products strategy for Fusion Middleware 11g:
- First, as Enterprise Applications and Business Processes are deployed on an Internet architecture, organizations continue to demand a unified and standards-based Middleware infrastructure on which to develop and deploy these Applications and Portals.
- Second, organizations continue to want greater agility and adaptability in their Enterprise Applications. "First Generation" SOA was primarily focused on modularizing applications to allow more modular functionality to be more easily adapted to business needs and to enable interoperability between the modules. However, "first generation" SOA failed to address the other important aspects of application design and middleware infrastructure that are required to support Business Applications that can truly adapt to business conditions.
- Providing a unified and declarative toolset with which Business Users and developers can work together to develop Business Applications and capture the behavior of the applications in metadata;
- Providing a unified Business Process Platform with which to orchestrate humans, applications, and information into processes that can be monitored and optimized in real time;
- Providing a common Enterprise Portal through which people can find the enterprise resources they need, to share them with others through personal productivity and social computing tools;
- Using the information they gather to quickly and easily adapt Business Applications to their changing needs; and
- Providing visibility, controls and analytics to govern how services and processes are deployed, re-used and changed across their entire lifecycle.
- Third, organizations continue to want data centers that use hardware, software, and people resources more efficiently. Several new hardware and software technologies such as multi-core processors, 64-bit addressable memory, RAM-based storage, 10GB Ethernet systems, and virtualization are now emerging. They allow large sets of compute capacity and memory to be pooled together into virtualized grids or "clouds" that are lower cost, easier to manage with more flexible capacity to respond to business needs. However, existing middleware products do not have the necessary capabilities to exploit these technologies to more efficiently deploy and manage Business Applications on such infrastructure.
Oracle Fusion Middleware 11gR1 further extends Oracle's vision of the Application Grid by:
- Exploiting new hardware technologies such as multi-core processors, 64-bit addressable memory, RAM-based storage, and 10GB Ethernet systems to run Business Applications more efficiently;
- Exploiting new software technologies for resource virtualization and management to make Business Applications lower cost to provision dynamically, easier to monitor and troubleshoot, and to manage application workloads more efficiently;
- Providing new Identity Management and Security technology to consolidate how users, their identities, and entitlements are managed, audited, and controlled to lower costs and improve security on Application Grids.
Oracle Fusion Middleware 11gR1 further extends Oracle's vision of delivering a complete, integrated, hot pluggable and best of breed Middleware Suite.
Oracle Fusion Middleware 11gR1 further extends Oracle's vision of agile and adaptive Business Applications by:
This gives you some of the design starting points for WebCenter Suite 11g. In the next post, I'll detail the strategy elements around providing a common Enterprise Portal through which people can find the Enterprise resources they need, to share them with others through personal productivity and social computing tools, and to use the information they gather to quickly and easily adapt Business Applications to changing needs.
However, if you are a speed reader and just want to know what Oracle WebCenter is, take a look at http://webcenter.oracle.com. Oracle WebCenter is composed of four key elements:
- Oracle WebCenter Framework: a modern portal framework to build and deliver any solution that might be considered a portal, composite app, social community, or web site. It includes core metadata management services in combination with a portlet runtime engine to change the way applications and portals are delivered and managed over their entire lifecycle.
- Oracle WebCenter Services: a prebuilt set of services that can be used to add social and personal productivity services to your application or portal. They include analytics and mashup capabilities to quickly add new features into existing portal deployments.
- Oracle Business Dictionary and Oracle Composer: a role-based view of all the enterprise resources that can be mashed up on a page including pre-built capabilities to add pages to any portal or application after it has been deployed.
- Oracle WebCenter Spaces: a pre-built application leveraging the previous three areas to deliver dynamic online business communites and social sites for all teams and companies.