AT ORACLE: Oracle News Briefs
JavaFX 1.3 Platform Released
JavaFX 1.3, the latest release of the Java platform for creating and delivering rich internet applications for desktop, browser, and mobile phones, is now available. The new platform features a range of performance and functional improvements.
JavaFX 1.3 offers new and enhanced support for cascading stylesheets (CSS) skinning, programmatic layout, and user interface (UI) controls. It significantly improves CSS and programmatic layout, making it faster, smaller, and more powerful. The existing UI controls have been rewritten to take full advantage of the new CSS support, resulting in simpler UI controls. The release includes the addition or upgrade of nine controls, plus previews of another eight controls. JavaFX 1.3 also changes the semantics of programmatic layout containers. In previous releases, there were two different layout paradigms: using layout containers, and using absolute layout by manually positioning and binding the sizes of scenegraph nodes. This release brings the semantics for the two styles of layout together.
Other new features in this release include performance improvements in the JavaFX Runtime; a new NetBeans IDE 6.9 Beta with improved editing and an updated JavaFX Composer plug-in; new features and enhanced performance in JavaFX Production Suite; a native JavaFX font family called Amble; support for the development of TV applications, including a new TV emulator; and a mobile emulator on the Mac platform.
“JavaFX is the best software for creating expressive and feature-rich cross-platform applications,” says Octavian Tanase, vice president of Java development at Oracle. “By enabling developers to build rich internet applications on top of the Java platform, we’re empowering millions of Java developers to leverage their existing skills to create advanced client applications that exceed user experience expectations.”
Running Java Applications in Virtualized Environments Now Easier
To make running Java applications in a virtualized environment easy and practical, Oracle has released Oracle Virtual Assembly Builder and Oracle WebLogic Suite Virtualization Option.
Oracle Virtual Assembly Builder is designed to help organizations quickly and easily deploy multitier enterprise applications in virtualized environments. It also enables administrators to quickly configure and provision these applications.
Oracle Virtual Assembly Builder provides a framework for automatically capturing the configuration of existing software components and packaging them as self-contained building blocks, known as appliances . In addition, it enables administrators to easily connect appliances as pluggable building blocks, known as assemblies , which can be used to create multitier applications.
Oracle WebLogic Suite Virtualization Option combines Oracle WebLogic Server with Oracle JRockit Virtual Edition in a new application server release optimized for virtualized environments and able to deliver higher application performance and increased hardware utilization. Oracle JRockit Virtual Edition enables Oracle WebLogic Server to run directly on Oracle VM without an operating system.
In a virtualized environment, Oracle JRockit Virtual Edition handles essential operating system functions including TCP/IP, hardware device interaction, file I/O, and process scheduling. It frees up hardware and management resources by removing operating system capabilities that are not essential for enterprise Java applications. Used together, Oracle JRockit Virtual Edition and Oracle Virtual Assembly Builder can drive deployment and runtime efficiencies and deliver both operational and capital cost savings.
“Oracle has made virtualization a reality for Java enterprise applications. Moreover, we are the only vendor to empower customers with this kind of comprehensive solution,” says Steven G. Harris, senior vice president of product development at Oracle. “With Oracle WebLogic Server running on Oracle JRockit Virtual Edition, we have eliminated the trade-off of server density and performance by bringing the world’s #1 application server to virtualized environments.”
Oracle CRM On Demand 17 Unveiled
Now available, Oracle CRM On Demand 17 is the latest release of Oracle’s on-demand customer relationship management (CRM) service. It introduces extensive forecasting and analytics capabilities.
New forecasting capabilities include flexible fiscal calendars for more-productive business operations, the ability to perform both revenue and product quantity forecasting, and real-time information comparisons against current and historical forecasts for proactive pipeline management.
To increase sales productivity, Oracle CRM On Demand 17 introduces usability enhancements and a newly redesigned user interface that enables sales teams to resize the solution to their preference, quickly navigate to relevant information, better manage lists, and customize field labels in Oracle Mobile Sales Assistant.
The new release maximizes pipeline management with automated time-based workflows to manage sales, marketing, service, and channels. It also helps reduce administration time through automated migration and data loader tools, including an on-demand migration tool to migrate customizations from one environment to another and an on-demand data loader to create, update, and delete massive data volumes.
Extended partner relationship management functionality in Oracle CRM On Demand 17 supports partner-delegated administration and analytics for deal registration, funding, and pipeline.
Also available, Oracle CRM On Demand Life Sciences Edition supports rapid sales presentations and simplified sample management and reporting. As a result, pharmaceutical companies can make every interaction count, reduce costs, increase distribution, and deploy everywhere. The Oracle CRM On Demand Life Sciences Edition offline client is both sales representative—and customer-facing.
“When debating a new CRM system or an upgrade, the core question asked in many organizations today simply comes down to this: ‘When will we see the payback?’” says Robert P. Mahowald, vice president of IDC. “A hosted CRM service that provides proven sales team productivity, analytics, and out-of-the-box industry-ready applications will have most users supplying the answer to their own question: ‘Right now.’”
Oracle President Charles Phillips says, “Oracle CRM On Demand 17 will help customers gain more-actionable insight, increase sales productivity, and achieve cost savings, and [it] showcases how Oracle solves organizations’ essential requirements to advance business opportunities and results.”
New Oracle Application Integration Architecture Foundation Pack Available
Using the pack, architects can capture definition and proposal of new services through the decomposition of business process models in an integration project workbench. It includes wizards and templates that automate the creation of new services. It also offers simplified installation of composite business processes through the creation of a comprehensive bill of materials that captures the dependencies between services and the autogeneration of deployment plans based on the customer’s environment.
The pack also gives customers and partners access to more than 130 prebuilt objects and more than 1,200 services.
“Designed to promote rapid deployment, reusability, and configurability of business processes, Oracle AIA Foundation Pack 11 g Release 1 saves time, effort, and cost compared to building integrations from the ground up, while realizing the value of a sustainable, enterprise-class SOA,” says Michael Weingartner, vice president of development for Oracle AIA and Oracle SOA Suite.
MySQL Cluster 7.1 Released
Oracle has unveiled MySQL Cluster 7.1, the latest release of its real-time relational database with no single point of failure. MySQL Cluster 7.1 includes MySQL Cluster Manager, a new solution that simplifies and automates the management of the MySQL Cluster database and enables administrators to respond quickly to changing market conditions and stringent service-level agreements. MySQL Cluster Manager allows users to manage a cluster of many nodes, and an automated management capability reduces the risk of database downtime resulting from manual configuration errors.
Another new feature, MySQL Cluster Connector for Java, helps accelerate development cycles and time to market and enables higher throughput and lower latency for Java-based services. MySQL Cluster Connector for Java allows developers to write Java applications that can use JDBC or the Java Persistence API to communicate directly with MySQL Cluster, making it easier to take advantage of the database’s high-performance and high-availability features.
MySQL Cluster 7.1 also features ndbinfo, which presents real-time status and usage statistics from the MySQL Cluster Data Nodes as SQL tables and views, providing developers and administrators with a simple and consistent means of proactively monitoring and optimizing database performance and availability.
MySQL Cluster 7.1 delivers enhanced database scalability to handle unpredictable workloads through support for in-memory and disk-based data, automatic data partitioning with load balancing, and the ability to add nodes to a running cluster with zero downtime. It provides high availability and predictable millisecond response times, which allow telecom and embedded users to meet their most demanding real-time application requirements.
“Beating the competition to market matters for every business,” says Edward Screven, chief corporate architect at Oracle. “With the new MySQL Cluster 7.1 release enhancing high availability and simplifying management of real-time telecom and embedded applications, companies can deliver new services faster and more reliably.”
Oracle VM Templates Released
Oracle VM Templates are now available for Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle’s JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, and Oracle’s PeopleSoft applications. These templates, based on Oracle Enterprise Linux, provide preinstalled and preconfigured enterprise virtual machines that help eliminate the need to install new software from scratch.
Oracle VM Templates for Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 automate the installation and configuration of the operating system as well as Oracle E-Business Suite applications. Customers can also create their own templates for their configurations and deploy them in a virtualized environment.
Oracle VM Templates for JD Edwards EnterpriseOne provide a method to rapidly and predictably deploy the JD Edwards EnterpriseOne 9.0 update and JD Edwards EnterpriseOne Tools 9.98 update 2. The user simply copies the preconfigured virtual machines containing the operating system, database, Web server, and JD Edwards EnterpriseOne tools and applications and executes a “run once” script.
Oracle VM Templates for PeopleSoft human capital management (HCM) 9.1 applications and PeopleTools 8.50 contain the three tiers required for a PeopleSoft deployment—database, application server, and PeopleSoft Pure Internet Architecture. This allows for a PeopleSoft HCM environment to be deployed by simply starting the three virtual machines provided.
New Releases of Oracle User Productivity Kit and Oracle Tutor Support the Creation of Dynamic, Interactive Content
Oracle has unveiled Oracle User Productivity Kit 3.6.1 and Oracle User Productivity Kit Professional 6.3, new releases of its content development platforms for creating and delivering documentation, simulations, and in-application performance support for custom, Oracle, and third-party enterprise applications. Oracle has also released Oracle Tutor 12.2, an update to its word processor-based business process documentation tool. Used together, these tools help content developers to create dynamic and interactive content.
Both Oracle User Productivity Kit releases include a sound editor that allows users to incorporate sound in their content through sound recording, editing, and playback.
Oracle Tutor 12.2 features enhanced, customizable user-facing HTML documents with introduction, task, and flowchart tabs that allow users to quickly navigate between policy and procedure information.
“The latest updates of Oracle User Productivity Kit and Oracle Tutor continue to meet customer demands for enhanced deployment capabilities and standardization of knowledge capture and deployment across the enterprise,” says Stuart Dunsmore, senior director, applications development, at Oracle.
New Release of Oracle Berkeley DB Available
Oracle has launched Oracle Berkeley DB 11 g Release 2, the latest version of its high-performance, small-footprint open source embeddable database engine for mission-critical “edge” applications. This release introduces a new SQL API, based on SQLite, which helps simplify application development. With SQLite Tools integration, all tools that work with SQLite also work with Oracle Berkeley DB, making it easier to develop, deploy, and manage Oracle Berkeley DB applications and databases.
Other new features in the release include support for JDBC and ODBC connections to Oracle Berkeley DB. In addition, Oracle Berkeley DB 11 g Release 2 introduces support for the Android platform, offering developers the ability to develop and deploy a wide range of applications.
“With new SQL capabilities and Android support, Oracle Berkeley DB 11 g Release 2 makes it easier for developers to quickly develop and deploy new edge applications that meet users’ high-performance and scalability demands,” says Marie-Anne Neimat, vice president of development at Oracle.
Oracle Agrees to Buy Phase Forward
Oracle has agreed to buy Phase Forward, which makes software used to manage clinical drug trials. Oracle plans to merge the Waltham, Massachusetts-based company into its Health Sciences unit. Oracle expects that the combination will help researchers, physicians, regulators, and patients share and access drug data. Phase Forward’s software has been used in more than 10,000 clinical trials. Customers include AstraZeneca, Boston Scientific, Eli Lilly and Company, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“The life sciences and healthcare industries are converging as they seek to control costs while accelerating patient-centered innovation,” says Neil de Crescenzo, senior vice president and general manager, Oracle Health Sciences. “Phase Forward brings outstanding products and employees with significant expertise to Oracle, which will help enable the delivery of personalized medicine and value-based healthcare.”