SAN FRANCISCO -- Regardless of Oracle's intentions for BEA Systems and its middleware portfolio, the company is moving full steam ahead with its own middleware product.
Oracle's upcoming release of its Fusion Middleware 11g product will have a little bit of everything, according to Thomas Kurian, senior vice president in charge of Fusion Middleware.
Peter Barclay, director of planning, strategy and business risk management with the system and process division of Caterpillar Inc., the Peoria, Ill.-based heavy equipment manufacturer, says Enterprise 2.0 is not something his company is currently using, but he sees some potential there.
"If we're going to use it, we need to find out how to use it affordably and effectively," Barclay said.
He was more interested in the integration capabilities.
"The scope and ability to monitor performance is important," Barclay said. "The challenge for a company like mine is how you align that with your legacy systems."
New capabilities in the Oracle BI server include data visualization in BI dashboards and multidimensional viewing. BI Server and Essbase have been more tightly integrated with Microsoft Office environments, including Excel.
"For example, with PowerPoint you can lay out the charts you want and have them connected to the BI server," Kurian said, "and the BI server will auto-update the charts, making it simpler for business people to get the data they need."
Oracle has also built into Fusion Middleware 11g scenario-based reporting for Hyperion planning and budgeting, and new features around workflow compensation planning.
In Content Management, Oracle has added a feature that allows business users to create documents, lay them out on the Web, publish them to a repository, and then publish them via RSS and metadata. WebCenter can then make it easy to find that information, Kurian said.
The JDeveloper and ADF have been extended to build business logic to Java Beans and can be extended to Office clients and mobile devices. The new AppServer features include support for Java Beans 3, Jax*, WS*. Kurian said that the Enterprise Service Bus provides the ability to access services from Oracle and non-Oracle applications to create services and virtualize them.
Fusion Middleware 11g has been beta tested through four phases by 170 customers in total, and a developer preview will be available in December, Kurian told reporters in a question-and-answer session.