Tuesday, 4 October 2011

OOW2011 Monday Day ONE

So it's the first day of OpenWorld conference and the downtown San Francisco area is packed with conference attendees as usual. I've been here for 4 days already attending meetings with Oracle development at Redwood Shores and the weather has been blue sky and a scorching 35C.  Today it's cold, wet and windy.  Of course only the sensible ones brought umbrellas - so not many then.

Paco Aubrejuan gave a break-kneck speed insight into what PeopleSoft developers are doing in 9.1 Feature packs and 9.2 Applications with the new 8.50, 8.51 (and soon to be released 8.52) toolset.  Lots of prebuilt Work Centers, integrated search-centric interface (search then act rather than navigate, search, act) which more closely matches the consumer internet experience (such as Amazon, Google, etc) and strong emphasis on improved usuability.  Paco gave some examples of features to keep cost down such as dynamically building your own product update package (need to find out more on this as it sounds fascinating - sounds like you pick and choose what patches, features you want and an upgrade package gets built for you online) and new feaure called Data Sets which allow you to compare and migrate confiuration data from one system to another.

Spent another high speed, concentrated "run" through building and consuming web services in PeopleTools. Highlighted some new features in 8.52 including REST, new configuration Work Center and improved cross PopleSoft transaction monitoring and test and diagnostics tools.  The presenter brilliantly demonstrated how easy it was to create and consume web services and how the new 8.51 Document feature was the way forward in working with XML.  Excellent hour.

The last session of the day was the PeopleTools Roadmap. Jeff Robins (Oracle PeopleTools Strategy) gave a great insight into what applications look like when the new PeopleTools were used.  Rather than a blow by blow list of new features Jeff took the approach of demonstrating applications built using the tools.  Nice!  Here's the main themes

1) A change from the traditional "Navigate - Search - Action" to a new search centric paradigm of "Search - Action".  The inclusion of Oracle SES (secure enterprise search) as part of core PeopleTools is most impressive feature.  A search experience similar to Amazon, Google or eBay is now available across the entire application or within a specfic component.

2) Context sensitive action menus are springing up in search results and elsewhere in the application.

3) Heavy investment in improving how pagelets behave in portal, work Centers and Content Dashboards.

4) Pivot tables/graphs are new programming objects replacing the traditional analytic grid.  Vey visual way of viewing and dynamically changing the view of data on a page.

More tomorrow.

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