What to expect from Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne 2010

I think if I had to lay down two words to describe this week’s forthcoming Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne conference and exhibition it would be “inevitability” and “surprise”. I guess it was inevitable that a commercial entity (for want of many other potential terms) such as Oracle could eventually come in and scoop up the “stewardship” of Java. Of course it was also inevitable that this would lead to the eventual culling of certain ‘open’-only elements of the total IT stack under Oracle, with OpenSolaris being a case in point – in that it now only exists as ‘Solaris’.

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So I think as we hear from Larry Ellison tomorrow morning San Francisco time, some of his speech with sit within the inevitable; the company’s commercial edge has started to bite – and, to be fair, as a business, why shouldn’t it?

But I’m betting that Larry will also reserve a few surprises for us. He’s made his impact felt right across the Java landscape for many years, but none more so than in the last twelve months of course.

So let’s look at this week’s event – and start with some fun facts:

Over 40,0000 attendees
Sells out every downtown hotel, plus hotels on the Peninsula
On peak nights, attendees fill more than 14,700 hotel rooms
Attendees from 113 countries, representing 59% of the world
42,000 gallons of filtered tap water served to attendees
93,000 sodas (that’s fizzy drinks!) served during breaks
47,000 juices served during breaks
140,000 cups of coffee
Over 60,000 boxed lunches served

That’s basically all Oracle is telling us before we get to the show. So, given the deluge of media materials that will no doubt be proffered forth over the week ahead – I decided to turn to Oracle partners for their views on what we might expect. The following quotes were obtained exclusively for Computer Weekly Open Source Insider in advance of the show.

Billy Bosworth, vice president and general manager for Quest’s enterprise database business unit suggested, “It feels like Oracle is poised to move aggressively into the SaaS world as its Fusion strategy continues to evolve. Perhaps such an announcement next week would also allow the company to clarify its vision for cloud computing in general, which has been somewhat mixed to date. Now that it owns Java and the hardware layer, will a PaaS solution be far behind? One that would allow rapid development and deployment, on an entire Oracle stack perhaps?”

“Organisations are putting a rigorous amount of emphasis on improving business processes and getting more from the applications they use everyday,” commented Eric Musser, CEO of user process management software company OpenSpan. “At Oracle OpenWorld you are going to see how enterprise applications like CRM, cloud computing and database trend technologies are helping organisations quickly transform their businesses to drive efficiency, increase productivity and lower business costs.”

“Oracle OpenWorld is a forum where organisations can gather to build the groundwork for future trends. Smart organisations anchored around customer centricity are looking for information technology solutions that enable faster time to market through better customer insights and the optimisation of related business processes. By leveraging a combination of domain expertise in select verticals and special insight, Oracle and its partners will showcase a range of point, accelerator and warehouse solutions at the conference. Oracle OpenWorld will allow industry experts to continually develop solutions that enhance enterprise competitiveness as well as deepen customer engagement,” said L.N. Balaji, president of US operations at ITC Infotech.

Benjamin Mestrallet, CEO of eXo noted, “This year will be about Java in the cloud. With the emergence of PaaS in the consumer web and the need for its rationalisation in the enterprise, expect a lot of cloud initiatives at JavaOne — proving once again just how adaptable Java can be as a platform. Companies like VMware and Red Hat are pushing the cloud from their virtualisation stack while smaller companies like CloudBees and even us – eXo – are aiming for the upper stack. This is really exciting.”

Mestrallet goes on to say that, “I also expect a lot of talk about Google and its absence. In my opinion, Google is acting in its own self interest and diverting everyone’s attention from the real issue by stirring OSS community sentiment against Oracle — and it looks like it’s working well. But the fact is that Google did not license Java from Sun and skirted around the IP issue by creating their own VM for Android to get away with not paying. Oracle owns Sun now and (rightly so) Larry Ellison wants his piece of the cake. This is a cake Google would never have baked without Sun’s recipe.”

Sacha Labourey, founder and CEO of CloudBees commented, “This will be the first year that JavaOne is going to be so strongly focused on the cloud, probably because Java, unlike Ruby, is pretty badly served in terms of cloud solutions. But now is the time and 2011 is the year of Java in the cloud. On a separate note, this is also Java’s coming out party under Oracle: were they serious when, less than a year ago, they were requesting an open Java community, or was this plain hogwash? Oracle will either rejuvenate Java, or OpenWorld will incite a schism in that market, with other major Java vendors (e.g. IBM, RHT) simply forking and rebranding Java.”

Also up for the agenda ahead is a panel made up of Java ME reps from AT&T, Digital Chocolate, Intertek, GetJar, Oracle and Nokia who will officially announce Trusted Status from Java Verified as well as a first call for Java ME developers to apply to become Trusted Status developers. Last, but a very long way from least is Parasoft who will, according to Wayne Ariola the company’s VP of strategy, “Offer two new releases. First, Parasoft Concerto 4.0, an Agile development platform that delivers control of the Software Development Lifecycle – and Parasoft SOAtest-Oracle Fusion Edition, a full-lifecycle quality platform that includes Parasoft SOAtest and Parasoft Load Test.”

It’s going to be a busy week – and there’s the even the Black Eyed Peas, Don Henley and the Steve Miller Band at the after party too! What more could you ask for? A day trip to Alcatraz and a walk across the Golden Gate perhaps?

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