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Oracle and Enterprise 2.0

Everyone is talking about Enterprise 2.0. It came up at a recent online strategy briefing hosted by Oracle president Charles Phillips and senior VP of development Thomas Kurian.

At the event, which provided an overall outline of how Oracle would integrate BEA’s middleware technology into its roadmap, Kurian discussed how Oracle is now evolving its middleware product to support the new styles and patterns of development and communication in the age of Enterprise 2.0 and portals.

“The notion of a portal is evolving in two fundamental ways, from the point of view of how you integrate web publishing, and transactional styles of development, and the notion of communities,” said Kurian. “And secondly it also is evolving to integrate a number of these technologies — discussion forums, Wikis, RSS, blogs, communities, etc. — so it becomes a much richer medium of communications.”

Kurian defined Oracle’s product strategy around this as enabling users to use a single programming model to support the multi-channel composite interface resulting from the merger of different styles of applications in this new world, as well as transforming how people share information.

“By multi-channel we mean the ability to run this composite user interface on mobile phone, on web browsers, on PDAs or a variety of styles of devices, and by composite interface we really see the convergence of different styles of applications,” Kurian said.

He pointed out that traditionally developers would use different frameworks and toolsets to create: 1) the rich media web sites that run the corporate dot.com; 2) the web front end that performs transactions into an enterprise application; 3) a traditional portal that accesses information from different places under a single user interface; and 4) a social computing site such as a portal with embedded communities of users sharing information.

That created difficulties when companies wanted to extend their portals to support transactions into an enterprise application, for example, because portals support a non-transactional interface such as JSR 168 or WSRP.

"Our plan is to unify the programming model for all of these because we basically see all of these converging," he said. "Every web site wants to have portal-like capabilities, every portal-like capability wants to publish rich media and have social computing facilities. So that's part one of the strategy."

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