Being Mr. Ellison…

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Its almost Christmas and the end of this 2010 year and I keep wondering what will happen, Oracle wise, in 2011. I have, had, my idea’s about what might happen, will happen, if I would be Mr. Larry Ellison. Being “in the trade”, a Oracle geek, since 1993, I have seen some movements like, “the raw iron project”, Mr. Ellison buying nCube, Oracle Powerbrowser, the Oracle network computer, the arrival of InterOffice, Collaboration Suite, Beehive, buying data connector and security service and product companies, building Oracle Fusion from scratch. Most impressive are those fully optimized hardware machines like Exadata and ExaLogic, and the supporting OS Oracle Linux. But hold your horses wasn’t Oracle the “data company”…

Does Oracle still fit in the internet age? Stuff is going fast. ROI, Time to Market are most important. If you miss the change, the new trend, it can kill your company almost instantly (iPhone, Android, Oops: Symbian…). Whatever you think of Oracle, Mr. Ellison’s strategies, IMHO I think that he has vision but sometimes is to fast regarding its implementation. Just like “Google Wave”, you can have a hell of a app/idea, but if it is too early, no one will jump after you in the water, to get it on shore… The nerds will like it, but if it doesn’t sell, you’re betting on a dead horse. So what makes Oracle tick, money wise? I think that its mostly licenses regarding their main products like the database and Oracle E-Business Suite, but the “old arena” for those products don’t show that much growth. The solution to this, IMHO, is the internet and this much buzzed hype called “Cloud” (in all its variations). The internet has the ability to reach everyone at any time and everywhere…

So if I where Mr. Ellison, why wouldn’t I make use of this enormous huge market out there that is internet enabled?

Why only provide my services and software to the classic environment, the company in-house Oracle architectures which can not be pushed that easily into new features, new methods, to scale more easily. In principal that’s what my (his) customers want. The latest stuff, with a high level of ROI and Time to Market, beating the competition to bring their core business faster to the customer/market. And I can, being Mr. Ellison…

I have Exadata, I have ExaLogic, I have the whole stack that is cloud service enabled, including the new Oracle Fusion Apps. So my step would be to buy a company like Amazon Web Services (I already read rumors indicating such a possibility on twitter), place my hardware stack, Exadata and ExaLogic machines, with all those software goodies like Oracle Fusion etc, whatever can be directly serviced, licensed and packaged by Oracle, via a data center, on the internet and open this new customer base. From that moment on, if you (temporarily) need a piece of ExaLogic, Exadata, Oracle Fusion, Oracle Cloud Open Office or else, just go to the Oracle web portal, pay your Oracle fee or license via your credit card for those specific customer needs you have and via a click everything is at hand (almost) instantly… Voila!. No need to buy software, install, configure, upgrade, secure or else: Oracle provides the instant service needed. Optimized services, hard- and software, configured and maintained by their best people. No intermediate companies needed. Shop via your OneClick@Oracle account and start your business. Need new software, more functionality, or else? Oracle provides via your secured one click account via the internet.

Hold on, I hear you say, but what about backup and recovery and foremost security?

Backup and recovery can be easily provided via Oracle somewhere worldwide via a back office data center solution. Security is probably better maintained than most current in-house “secure environments”, were sometimes, zillions of client machines, connected via the internet (using old “secure” software) directly connect to “the back office systems”, so also zillions of possible entries to attack the back office. I think this is probably one of the reasons, including its complexity, that big customer environments are so incredible difficult to upgrade or to maintain, because most of no idea what will tumble if one domino gets pushed (or upgraded…). So most of those environments still work with Internet Explorer 6, old operating system versions, etc, etc, etc… How rigid can your environment get?

If Oracle would provide, for example, a Oracle Fusion Cloud service, then there is only one “portal/entree”, or at least an architecture which can be way more easily secured due to the limited amount of possible attack options. Of course if you don’t dare to make this step, you always could create your private cloud based on a dedicated (outsourced nearby) data center. But what is the big difference…? The only reason I can think of is custimization, but if parts of your needs can be generalized, such a Oracle Cloud Software service could be a big advantage, especially regarding ROI and Time to Market – that is world wide and globally!

Don’t be scared. We are already doing this… I read my newspaper via iPad, check my mail via Google Mail, look television shows in specialized web portals, socialize my brains out via Twitter, Facebook and others. So why don’t I do my Oracle software based business also not via the internet? Buy my Oracle licenses via this internet, and check its validity via a license Oracle website. Use my Oracle Open Office via the internet, and generate reporting and file,check and manage my business via a internet Oracle app. Need a virtual desktop environment, fully secured for you Oracle Cloud Fusion environment? Check your business via your internet enable devices, like an iPhone or iPad or others: anytime, everywhere, worldwide. Oracle can provide.

There is no reason, AFAIK (that can not be overcome) to not do it…

I was wondering. If this would be happening, me an Oracle DBA, how do I adapt? Do I have to adapt to a different environment and needs? My workplace would change, but as long there is data, I will manage. There always will be needs to solve data problems beyond the scope of average architectures and methods…and that said…I manage most of that via the internet… The world is changing, its time to adapt or change the world yourself.

M.

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About Author

Marco Gralike, working for AMIS Services BV as a Principal Oracle Database Consultant in the Netherlands, has experience as a DBA since 1994 (Oracle 6). Marco is also eager and skillful in other fields, like Operating System Administration and Application Servers, mainly to find working, performing solutions. Marco has been specializing in Oracle XMLDB, since 2003, focusing on his old love, database administration and performance. He is an Oracle XMLDB enthusiast ever since. He is also a dedicated contributor of the Oracle User Group community, helping people with their steep XMLDB learning curve. To this purpose, Marco also devoted his personal blog site to XMLDB and other Oracle issues. Marco is a member of the OakTable network and an Oracle ACE Director (specialization Oracle XMLDB).

2 Comments

  1. I don’t think that there is a “money-making scheme” in place, its just how current direct internet business is/can be setup, have a look at, for example, http://www.salesforce.com. Licenses, the bookeeping that is based on current Oracle license methods, can easily be done via a web portal and/or via the already achieved logging mechanism via “My Oracle Support” websites and Oracle Enterprise Manager extensions. Most of the technology is already in place if you start thinking about it. The only thing to do would be to put all things/services/etc in place and available via the internet. From that moment on technically you can offer most Oracle services as needed/sellable. Harware as a service (already there for parts of exadata), AWS web offerings (AMIs environments), Oracle on Demand like Siebel (thks RoelH), Oracle Cloud Open Office and as a mayor business change, for example, Oracle Fusion Apps (E-Business Suite serviced via the internet).

  2. Hi Marco,

    Very interesting vision you have shared with us here. And with Mr. Ellison – perhaps he can take advantage of your thoughts. To make money of the cloud is probably not so much the issue. To make the same amount of money (or more) from the cloud as from the current on-premise license strategy  is probably a challenge. The cloud more or less mandates pay-per-use. Whereas ORCLs current policies do no such thing: you pay per user or even per processor – even if all are idle – and returning licenses is not really an option. Licenses do not scale up seamlessly (only with steps) and do not scale back down at all. There is no technical reason why Oracle could not offer all you suggest – and I suppose eventually it will – but the money-making scheme might just become a little too transparent.

    Happy X-Mas!

    Lucas

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