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25 September 2013

Oracle OpenWorld 2013, day four

Oh noes, we’re halfway done

It is sort of scary how fast conferences go by.  Maybe I shouldn’t be so shocked but wow, attending OpenWorld feels like flying a Super Étendard about 50 feet off the deck at 600 knots.  Exciting, in other words.

OpenWorld is a very exciting time, because of all of the glitz that only a firm the size of Oracle could bring and because of the fantastic information sharing and networking opportunities that a conference of this size affords.

So, will Developing Essbase Applications ever have a second edition?

The answer is yes, exact contents to be determined.  I had breakfast with my editor of CRC Press at David’s Delicatessen and it is a go.  Now it’s just up to We Happy Few to figure out what the heck we are going to do with the second edition.  

We’ve done well as far as sales goes, but the Essbase world is changing, and we need to make the book mirror that new landscape.  I have a bunch of ideas (probably too many) and I need to work through what will be new, what will be revised, and what just might get dropped.

I’ll see how many new grey hairs will result.  

Oracle Enterprise Performance Management in the Cloud

Ananth Avva, LiveOps Inc.; David Pooley - Sr. Director - EPM Global Market Development, Oracle;
Jennifer Toomey - Senior Director, Business Analytics Product Marketing, Oracle;
I’m sitting in on the cloud presentation given by Oracle and my buddies at Qubix.  As readers of this blog know, I’ve been a huge fan of EPM in the cloud for development purposes.  

On my last project the client suffered a number of infrastructure issues and we were able to go to the Amazon cloud to run EPM without issue and then migrate back down to their servers when they were available.

But of course I couldn’t guarantee security (I am an Essbase hacker, not an infrastructure hacker) so we very purposely did not bring any real data up to the cloud, did not use any employee metadata (which was a bit difficult as there was a workforce application), and in general tied our hands.  It was better than nothing, in fact a lot better than nothing, but we were constrained in what we could do.

I’d love to be able to go to the client and say, “Hey, Oracle’s got a product, it’s the full deal, and it’s secure.  Let’s get that going for the first phase and the project timeline pressure that hinges on your infrastructure simply goes away.”  Yes, that sure would be nice.  And now it’s possible.
Roger Cressy of Qubix is now speaking.  His comments:
  • Not just Planning in the cloud but big rewrite of the tool.
  • Biggest change to the tool since it came out.
  • Customer benefit is that the dependence on infrastructure at project startup is simply gone, no install, opex vs. capex, and this is full Planning, not a crippled version of the tool.
  • Consulting doesn’t go away (Cameron the consultant is glad to hear this) so functional requirements and design is still there.  Data and metadata extractions, optimizations, calcs, etc. are all still part of the Planning implementation game.
  • But from both a customer and consultant perspective, the big dependencies on infrastructure are gone.

Real-World Performance: What Is Big Data, and What Makes It Big?
Andrew Holdsworth - Senior Director of Real World Performance, Oracle; Kaiyao Huang - Principal
Performance Engineer, Oracle; Michael Hallas - Architect, Oracle;
Trillion row tables?  Hmm, a bit bigger than your typical Essbase data source.  An interesting bit of math is:  if you process a row a second, how long does a trillion rows take?  Answer:  32 years.  Hmm, I have seen slow queries but that would most definitely take the cake.

If I were going to try to summarize this session (which apparently is part three of three), it is how to use set-based SQL along with a bunch of other good SQL practices (which are mostly over my head, sadly) to tackle really big data sets.

Product Development Panel Q&A: Oracle Hyperion EPM Applications

Matthew Bradley - VP, EPM Development, Oracle; Prasad Kulkarni - Senior Director, Financial Planning
Applications, Oracle; Kash Mohammadi - VP of Development, Oracle; Douglas Cosby - VP of Software Development, Oracle; Rajesh Bhatia - VP of Product Development, Oracle;
I am looking forward to this one.  A lot.

And I wasn’t disappointed.  Oracle took all questions with quite a bit of grace – I wouldn’t want to be the St. Andrew of product management.  Nothing was off the table and I for one am glad that Oracle are as open as they are.
I asked the question I seem to always ask at meetings like this – when oh when oh when will we get METAREAD filters in Planning.  The answer is the 32nd day of Never, unfortunately.  The Way Forward is to use Planning data sources and I suppose that makes sense when you want to capture all of the relational goodness and Smart Lists that Planning supports.
So for those of you who persist (like me, for instance) in preferring Essbase as a data source, may I point you to this post here on rolling your own METAREADS from Planning.

There’ll be more

I’ll be (hopefully) doing a better job today with the live blogging.  

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