A day in the life of an Oracle Applications Consultant

Saturday, February 18, 2006

ClustrMaps analysis tool tracks Oracle Apps Blog Traffic

I have to rave about this really cool web site traffic analysis tool I’ve just added to the site . ClustrMaps graphically depicts where in the world your traffic is coming from by means of clustered dots on the world map.

If you take a look down the left hand pane of this site you’ll see the OracleAppsBlog ClustrMap which displays up to date traffic information for the blog. Clicking on the map will take you to a bigger picture of this blogs traffic distribution around the planet. Here’s an example of the world wide traffic distribution since I put the cluster map on the blog. It shows a heavy amount of traffic coming from the United States, Europe, United Kingdom and India which doesn’t suprise me at all since these are pretty much the most wired or internet savvy nations in the world.

World Wide Clustr Map for OracleAppsBlog

I’ve subscribed to ClustrMaps Plus which for a small monthly fee provides unlimited archives of old maps and allows you to zoom to continents. Below is an example of a drill down I performed to the United Kingdom traffic information. Talking of Stats, you’ll find further traffic analysis information for this blog at Statcounter, MyBlogLog and Site Meter

Uk Traffic Clustr Map for OracleAppsBlog

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Oracle Buys Open Source Software Company Sleepycat

Oracle today announced that it has added Berkeley DB to its embedded database product line which includes Oracle Lite for mobile devices and Oracle TimesTen for high performance in-memory database applications.

In this press release: Andrew Mendelsohn, senior vice president, Oracle Database Server Technologies stated:

Sleepycat’s products enhance Oracle’s market-leading database product family by offering enterprise-class support to customers who need to embed a fast, reliable database at a lower cost.

In a related blog entry, Mike Olson CEO of SleepyCat also provides some insight into the acquisition.


Connecticut State Governments integrated Financial, HR and Payroll System

I came across the Core CT site today and found it to be a site with a wealth of information relating to systems implementation.

According to the site:

Core-CT is the system that has replaced Connecticut state government’s core financial and administrative computer systems including central and agency accounting, accounts payable, payroll, time and attendance, worker’s compensation, personnel, and other legacy systems. For years before Core-CT was implemented, these systems were plagued by poor integration, redundant data entry, and time-wasting reconciliation. They were written in a number of different languages, resided on many platforms, and included numerous databases. This older technology was not adaptable to workflow and e-commerce.

The state’s central administrative agencies - the Office of the State Comptroller, the Departments of Administrative Services and Information Technology, and the Office of Policy and Management - banded together to undertake the transition to a new, integrated system encompassing virtually all major administrative functions and all executive-branch state agencies. The system uses enterprise resource planning (ERP) software to tie together all functions, using an integrated suite of software applications, a common database, and a unified technical architecture.

The Core-CT fact sheet outlines what modules and systems were implemented as follows:

Core-CT is Connecticut state government’s central financial and administrative computer system. Using PeopleSoft’s ERP suite, the system encompasses central and agency accounting functions, including modules for general ledger, purchasing, accounts payable, accounts receivable, billing, assets, and inventory, with projects and contracts scheduled to be implemented in 2006; as well as PeopleSoft’s Human Resource Management System, with modules for payroll, time and labor, human resources, and benefits. Core-CT covers all these functions for executive branch agencies, and some of its functions are also used by the Judicial Branch, the General Assembly, and state institutions of higher education. In addition, Core-CT uses PeopleSoft’s EPM ad-hoc reporting function to allow queries on its vast database.

Currently, the system uses PeopleSoft Financials version 8.4 but will be upgrading to version 8.8 around July 2006; HRMS uses PeopleSoft version 8.3 and will be upgrading to 8.9 around May 2006. Some 7,600 state workers use Core-CT. They pay the state’s bills in a $15.3 billion annual budget (fiscal year 2006), including the payroll for all state employees.

Launched in 2003, Core-CT is based at the Department of Information Technology’s East Hartford, CT office; it is managed jointly by the Office of the State Comptroller, the Department of Administrative Services, and DOIT; these agencies hold the statutory authority for the system’s functions.  Approximately 150 people work in the development and maintenance of Core-CT.

Other interesting areas of the site include the Presentation Library, Document Library and Chart of Accounts Documentation. I also thought the catalog of online financial reports provides a good example of how reports should be documented.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Oracle Announces New Releases of Internal Controls Manager and Financial Consolidation Hub

I’ve been interested in Internal Controls Manager ever since the first release and like what Oracle is doing with it. Apparently they now have about 250 customers using ICM.

Oracle Financial Consolidation Hub version 2 is available now whilst Oracle Internal Controls Manager version 5 is scheduled to be generally available in 2006.

According to the Press Statement:

The new versions will help to ensure the quality and transparency of financial information across the enterprise by integrating the preparation of financial statements with the periodic evaluation of a company’s internal controls.

Finance teams have traditionally managed consolidation and reporting separately from compliance certification efforts. This meant that finance teams had to report financial results without complete knowledge of the risks, mitigations, and audit tests that lay behind each financial statement line item, or finance teams had to track these relationships manually. In the latest release, Oracle Financial Consolidation Hub introduces full integration with Oracle Internal Controls Manager to converge financial reporting and compliance certification processes. Oracle’s corporate performance and compliance management applications are built on a single analytic platform, which provides the framework necessary for consistent processes and certification across disparate source systems. The single data model delivers greater visibility and helps increase confidence in financial results by presenting consolidated global financial results with related risks and mitigations.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Official Oracle Blogs site goes live

It looks like the official Oracle Blogs site has just gone live. I’ve noticed a lot of inbound links coming from the site yesterday.

At this point in time the site pretty much consists of a list of links to Oracle Blogs. Hopefully there’ll be some further development and we’ll see more contributions from Oracle Executives and employees. You can see some of Brian Duff’s comments on this new development here.

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