Open for Business

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Sorry, Oracle IS OPEN

After attending Oracle Open World earlier this week and listening to Charles' keynote and a series of sessions, I was happy to hear the word open (standards) so many times. I wanted to do my part and set the record straight about something Oracle is unfairly labeled as: the idea that unlike its competitors, Oracle is not a supporter of industry standards and produces proprietary software to lock customers in and trap them forever.

Here are some of the reasons why I think this is non-sense and that Oracle is much more OPEN than many people out there think.

1- Oracle is a major supporter of industry standards. Every component of Oracle Fusion Middleware as well as JDeveloper is 100% compliant with standards. The Faces support is JSR 127 compliant; the EJB support is JSR 220 compliant in fact Oracle's implementation is the base for the EJB3.0 reference implementation (RI). Oracle Fusion Middleware and tools also support J2EE 1.4, Java 5.0 as well as BPEL, JBI, JAX*, WS-I, WS-Security and more.

2- Oracle has also announced the "Hot-Pluggable Architecture" which allows IT organization to leverage their existing infrastructure investment by mixing and matching Oracle technologies with technologies from other vendors. What this means concretely is as long as other vendors comply with standards, Oracle products will seamlessly support and work with them. A good example would be Oracle BPEL Process Manager, Toplink or Oracle Portal (JSR 168 compliant) all run today on BEA Weblogic, IBM WebSphere or JBoss.

3- Oracle Fusion Middleware works well with non-Oracle databases including IBM DB2, Sybase or Microsoft SQL Server.

4- Oracle announced this week that Oracle's packaged applications will run natively (without modification) on the majority of IBM WebSphere middleware and its MQ messaging software, including its application server and portal, plus their recently announced Process Server. In other words, Oracle is opening its apps (#1 in the market - even in CRM with the addition of Siebel) layer natively to non-Oracle middleware.

5- Oracle Fusion Middleware also interoperates nicely with Microsoft .Net services. For example, Oracle BPEL PM seamlessly consumes .Net services. This can also be done from JDeveloper which support .Net services discovery and binding.

6- Oracle is a big believer in composite applications we already have many customers using Oracle tools and middleware to develop and deploy SOA-based applications. Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) simply cannot work without interoperability and industry standards across the board. You cannot be 100% behind SOA like Oracle is and ignore standards. It doesn’t make sense.

7- Last but not least, (this is my favorite as you can imagine) Oracle is actively increasing its involvement in the open source community (beyond Linux) in a number of ways:

a. First of all I am here to help build a vibrant open source community around our tools and middleware projects.

b. Oracle is leading 3 of Eclipse projects (under WTP and ETP) and we have been joined by numerous vendors (such as IBM, BEA and JBoss) to collaborate on enhancing the design time experience more specifically in the areas of JSF, EJB3.0 and BPEL.

c. Oracle is currently working with Apache to contribute a rich set of JSF-compliant user interface components. These components are expected to join the Apache MyFaces project. Expect this contribution to make a big impact on modern web application development (aka rich clients – AJAX style). I can see some of you drooling!

d. Oracle middleware and tools are certified to work with a number of very popular open source projects such as Ant, CVS, JUnit, Log4J, Struts, Spring, XDoclet, Axis, MyFaces and more.

e. Oracle has been a tremendous supporter of Linux for many years. In fact, Oracle was the first commercial database available on Linux. Oracle's Unbreakable Linux support offering includes Linux operating system support for Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), Novell SUSE, and Asianux. For more on this visit Oracle's Linux FAQ or Also check out what Oracle’s support of PHP.

In summary, I talked about how Oracle's middleware and tools are 100% behind standards, how they interoperate with non-Oracle products from competing vendors or open source and finally I mentioned briefly Oracle's involvement with the open source community (expect much more blogging on this). If some of you still think that Oracle is not willing to compete in an open environment (where the door is wide open to "Hot-swappable" non-Oracle products), using industry standards and supporting open source where appropriate; I am happy to hear from them and kick off a healthy debate.