OracleAppsBlog
A day in the life of an Oracle Applications Consultant

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Oracle buys Agile - Enterprise Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) Software

In May, Oracle announced the acquisition of Agile Software Corporation, a leading provider of product lifecycle management (PLM) software solutions for $495 million.

According to the press release:

Agile PLM - How Products Become Profits Agile’s PLM solutions help engineers, manufacturing and supply chain professionals and business executives drive the product innovation and introduction process, share product specifications and configurations and collaborate effectively across the supply chain in a variety of industries, including high-tech, life sciences, industrial manufacturing and consumer packaged goods. Agile’s solutions help customers make better product portfolio decisions, accelerate new product introduction, improve manufacturing quality and manage regulatory compliance. Customers of Agile include Acer, Flextronics International, GE Medical Systems, Harris, Heinz, Johnson & Johnson, Lockheed Martin, McDonald’s, Micron, QUALCOMM, Shell and ZF.

I’ve been working with integrating Oracle to PLM solutions lately so I’m quite interested in this acquisition. If you don’t know what PLM is or does, Wikipedia has this really good definition:

Product lifecycle management (PLM) is the process of managing the entire lifecycle of a product from its conception, through design and manufacture, to service and disposal. It is one of the four cornerstones of a corporation’s information technology structure. All companies need to manage communications and information with their customers (CRM-Customer Relationship Management) and their suppliers (SCM-Supply Chain Management) and the resources within the enterprise (ERP-Enterprise Resource Planning). In addition, manufacturing engineering companies must also develop, describe, manage and communicate information about their products (PLM).

Documented benefits include:

  • Reduced time to market
  • Improved product quality
  • Reduced prototyping costs
  • Savings through the re-use of original data
  • A framework for product optimization
  • Reduced waste
  • Savings through the complete integration of engineering workflows

Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is more to do with managing descriptions and properties of a product through its development and useful life, mainly from a business/engineering point of view; whereas Product life cycle management (PLM) is to do with the life of a product in the market with respect to business/commercial costs and sales measures.

I was pleased to see that Agile also has a blog. Recent entries from their blog:

Another PLM blog can be found under the Product Lifecycle Management Track on the OracleContractors blog, authored by Bob Barnett. His first post on the blog entitled Getting Started with PLM provides some insight into the direction Oracle is taking with PLM.

In terms of positioning in the Market the Gartner Magic Quadrant below shows the players in the PLM market as of September 2006. At this point in time Agile and Oracle were both in the Visionaries segment and its clear that by the Agile acquisition Oracle is intending to move into the Leaders segment and outdo SAP.

Gartner Magic Quadrant for PLM

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Oracle E-Business Suite R12 Vision Instance

If you haven’t yet been able to play on Release 12 of Oracle EBS, now is your chance. Solution Beacon now has a Release 12 instance (12.0.0 Vision Installation from Media Pack/10.2.0) of the Oracle Vision Test System publicly available.

Release 12 no longer uses JInitiator for forms access so take note of the following note posted on the Solution Beacon site relating to browser settings:

The Release 12 Vision environment uses the same underlying java framework as normal Oracle Applications Release 12. In Release 12 the Oracle JInitiator plug-in required by Release 11i is no longer used. Instead, the default JVM installed by Java 5.0 is used. If you do not already have Java 5.0 installed, it will be installed automatically when accessing Forms mode the first time. In order to allow the Java 5.0 plugin to be installed automatically, click Tools->Internet Options->Security->Trusted Sites. Then, click on the “Sites…” button. Enter *.solutionbeacon.net in the “Add this Web site the the zone” field and click Add. Make sure that “Require server verification (https: ) for all sites in this zone” is unchecked.

We have had many users send us email requesting help with getting the Oracle Forms mode interface to work. In most cases we have found the problem is due to popup blocking software. Before sending us an email requesting help, check to be sure that you do not have popup blocking software enabled. The Oracle Forms mode interface needs to open several additional browser windows and if it is blocked, Oracle Forms will fail to load.

 

Oracle E-Business Suite R12 Vision Login

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Oracle Fusion Middleware:  Who Stole Mark Drake?

For a not so technical but far more entertaining introduction to Oracle Fusion Middleware, take a look at the suspense thriller “Who Stole Mark Drake?”.

Posted By: Michael Siebert

Who Stole Mark Drake

The folks at Oracle Studios have been hard at work, setting the stage for a modern game of stolen identity.  Starring a cast of international cyber cops and robbers, this 11 minute whodunnit tale takes you on a global journey across several time zones and continents.  Now I won’t spoil the ending, but I will tell you it

doesn’t

end with Larry firing a few RPG’s from his Italian jet fighter into an abandoned warehouse filled with eBay scammers (perhaps Oracle Game Studios can work on that one).  It probably won’t win any Academy Awards either - although the soundtrack isn’t too shabby.  It will, however, give you a good introduction to the various products and components of Oracle Fusion Middleware and how it all came together to answer the question of “Who Stole Mark Drake?”.  After the film is over and you’ve regained your composure, be sure to go through the nine “Debrief Videos” , each of which answers various questions about how the mystery was solved through the use of Oracle technologies such as the Customer Data Hub, BPEL Process Manager and BAM, and Oracle Identity Management to name a few.

If you’re like me, you’ve made a commitment for 2007 to better understand Oracle Fusion.  But what is Fusion?  Applications?  Architecture?  Middleware?  Actually, it can be all of these.  The good news is that there is plenty of information out there to help us sort through the confusion about Fusion.  I’ll be focusing on the trials and tribulations of my journey to better understand the various concepts, products, and components of Oracle Fusion in future posts.  Until then, grab some popcorn and enjoy the show!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

OracleContractors.com Launches E-Business Suite Technical and Functional Q & A Forum

I just received an e-mail from Jason Howlett of OracleContractors.com informing me that today they have launched an E-Business Suite Technical and Functional Q & A Forum.

An excerpt of the mail states:

We are pleased to announce the launch today of the OracleContractors.com E-Business Suite Technical and Functional Forums.

The OracleContractors.com E-Business Suite Forum is a free of charge web support service created by and available to Oracle Apps Contractors that won’t clog your inbox!

With an intended global contribution it has been created to encourage collaboration between Contractors to offer a way to access and leverage Q & A support, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

It is hoped that it will be a gateway to what we believe to be the largest and most powerful global Oracle E Business Suite knowledgebase - “The Contractors”.

The Following Tracks have been created:

  • Oracle Apps Database Administration
  • Oracle Apps Project Management
  • Oracle Business Intelligence
  • Oracle CRM
  • Oracle Development Subjects
  • Oracle Financials
  • Oracle Fusion
  • Oracle HRMS
  • Oracle Manufacturing
  • Oracle OA Framework & XML Publisher
  • Oracle Order Management
  • Oracle Process Management
  • Oracle Product Lifecycle Management
  • Oracle Projects Suite
  • Oracle Supply Chain
  • Oracle Training Topics

Their blog has some very good contributions to date so I’m sure the forum will prove to be a very useful information source for anyone interested in Oracle technical and functional questions and answers. When I first started implementing Oracle, there were very few decent forums around, now there’s an abundance of forums one can use to post questions and review answers on - see this listing of other Oracle Applications and E-Business Suite Forums and if you know of any not on the list, then add your comments and I’ll be sure to include them.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Oracle bid for SAP and Business Objects?

Feed surfing the other night, I came across a rumour indicating that Oracle could potentially take over SAP in this article - Oracle Bid Rumour boosts SAP shares. This would certainly turn Project Fusion in to Confusion. Personally I don’t see how this would get passed the monopolies and merger’s commissions in the various countries affected and I think it’s more likely that Microsoft will take over SAP, although Jeff Nolan has some thoughts to the contrary. Whatever the case, its looking more likely that Oracle will make a move to purchase another BI company as indicated in this article - Oracle Rumoured to be eyeing Business Objects. Great time to be an Oracle Consultant!!

I’m trying to get the polling module working again so cast your vote and let me know if you experience any problems.

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