Friday, December 19, 2008

Check Your Charities


This is another non-Oracle, personal posting. I just found a great service for rating charities. The holidays are a traditional time for donations, but there's a wide mix of charities out there looking for your money, some good, some predatory. My favorite, Modest Needs, came out with a 4 out of 4 star rating on the Charity Navigator website. 

Charity Navigator analyzes charities based on several factors, notably the administrative overhead that can eat up donations. Just as I thought, Modest Needs has a very low overhead, and does a lot of good work in this world. The site allows you to register, which lets you save favorite charities so you can compare them, dive deeper into the menuing system, get the inevitable email newsletter, etc.

With the tough economic times, Modest Needs is likely to get a lot more requests this coming year, so it's a great time to start a monthly donation to them, even if it's a small one.

The worst charity I was able to find, by the way, is the National Save the Sea Turtle Foundation. These folks burn through $3.40 in admin and fundraising for every dollar that actually goes to accomplish something for the charity. No wonder turtles always look so sad.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

AIA, Hyperion, Performance, Unstructured Data, EBS

Do You Need AIA?

The Official AIA Blog asks: Do you really need AIA? You'd think that as the official AIA blog, and Oracle stockholders, they'd say: Why of course you do! But they actually look at the pros and cons. Good article,
found here.

ACS for Hyperion

Ok, next question, do you really need Advanced Customer Service for Hyperion? No doubts and vacillation on this one. You know you do. Read about it here. 


Glenn Fawcett's blog has a nice presentation available on performance analysis of the Oracle DB. It was prepared for Sun OS users, but has much wisdom for all trying to tame the waves of self-delusion, legend, myth and mystery that often surround performance optimization of large RDBMS.

Unstructured Data

Do you have a lot of unstructured data? Kevin Closson is looking into the future and seeing a wall of it heading our way. He has a suggestion on an HP server designed for that wall here.


EBS validation meets regular expressions in this excellent posting over at Gareth Roberts' In Depth Apps - Oracle eBusiness Suite blog.

Most Popular Stories of 2008 from Profit Online Magazine

It’s been a big year: for the global economy, for Oracle, and for Profit Online. Here’s a look back at the most popular stories of 2008—perfect for browsing as you clean out your inbox and prepare for the challenges of 2009.

Special Report: Sustainability
Green was on the enterprise agenda even before the start of 2008, but this collection of sustainability tips, case studies, and opinion was a popular read throughout the year.

Marvel's Superpowered IT Strategy
This cover story from Profit magazine's May issue hit the streets just as Marvel's Iron Man movie was arriving in theaters. It’s an excellent tale of IT strategy and teamwork between the CIO and lines of business.

Winning the Battle Against Attrition
As demand for skilled IT labor exploded in India, outsourcing pioneer Genpact used an Oracle system to keep employees trained, productive, happy, and off competitors' payroll.

Why Not Skip Web 2.0 and Go Directly to Web 3.0?
Dr. David J. Roberts of iBASEt, Inc. shared his thoughts about the impact of a semantic view of data on business, even as IT was devising strategic Web 2.0 practices in the enterprise.

Four Steps for Reducing Finance OverheadOriginally printed in Profit magazine, this story about reining in ad hoc finance processes gained new relevance as the financial crisis began to affect the marketplace.

Internet Seminars

View the following Siebel Internet seminars at your convenience:

* Breaking the Mold with Hosted Contact Centers
* Eliminate Call Center Complexity with Oracle's Preintegrated Hosted Call Center Solution
* Which CRM Deployment Is Right for Your Organization?
* The Checklist for Performing a Successful Siebel Upgrade
* Using the Customer Experience Blueprint to Achieve Outstanding Customer-Driven Business Results
* How to Deliver World-Class Customer Service While Lowering Costs
* Learn Successful Strategies for Business Intelligence Across the Enterprise

Latest Appcasts


Siebel 8.1.1 -Why Customers should upgrade to the latest release of Oracle's Siebel CRM

(10 min.) - December 16, 2008
Listen to George Jacob, Group Vice President, CRM discuss the advantages of upgrading to the latest release of Siebel CRM and how the cost of upgrading is actually just a fraction of what you think.

Siebel 8.1.1 for Communication (10 min.)
December 9, 2008
The latest release of Siebel CRM 8.1.1 includes many new features and enhancements for the Communications industry. In this webcast, you'll hear from Brenda Harris, Principal Product Strategy Manager for Communications here at Oracle. She'll explain how Siebel Communications 8.1.1 will help your communications company provide the most differentiated and personalized customer experience proven to increase customer loyalty and profitability levels.

Siebel CRM 8.1.1 Solutions (11 min.)
October 28, 2008
Listen to George Jacob, Group Vice President, CRM Applications, discuss the new release of Siebel CRM 8.1.1. By empowering end customers and creating a consistent, engaging service experience, businesses are leveraging Siebel CRM 8.1.1 to garner high customer loyalty levels and improve business profitability in this tough economic environment. Tune in today!

Empower Siebel 8.0 users with new simple-to-use rules engines (7 min.)
September 4, 2008
Listen to Rick Watts, an experienced Siebel and Haley Authority developer and Sr. Configuration Specialist from Oracle Advanced Customer Services discuss best practices for utilizing the Haley rules engine in a Siebel implementation project

E-Business Suite

Oracle E-Business Suite-CRM Release 12 Update (9 min.)
December 11, 2007
Get the latest information about Oracle's E-Business Suite CRM from Steve Tonas, Sr. Director, EBS CRM Products. Hear about the future plans in the CRM area and why customers continue to upgrade and implement to this new release.

An Update on Oracle Product Information Management
(7 min.)
December 4, 2007
Alison Schofeld, Product Strategy Director, introduces Oracle's Product Information Management (PIM) solution, discusses why it is important for companies today and why customers should chose Oracle's PIM solution.

Contributions By Angela Golla

Oracle Database 11g: The Top New Features for DBAs and Developers
In this 20-part series of articles, learn how important new Oracle Database 11g features such as Database Replay, Flashback Data Archive, and SecureFiles work via simple, actionable how-to's and sample code.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Oracle Retail News

NRF Preview: Oracle Retail Stakes Out Flagship Presence at January's BIG Show
From a two-story booth in a prime location to networking activities like the BIG CIO Party, Oracle Retail is staking out a flagship presence at this year's National Retail Federation (NRF) BIG Show, which will take place in New York's Jacob K. Javits Convention Center January 11–14. More...

Four Strategies to Protect Retail Margins in a Tough Economy
From the global credit crisis to the rising price of commodities, retailers find themselves in uncharted waters. But the news is not necessarily all bleak.

In fact, the crisis offers opportunities for retailers that provide customers value in the context of economic challenges. How is this possible? More...

Oracle Retail Courses at Oracle University
Gain a deeper understanding of Oracle Retail with an Oracle University course. Topics include
- RMS 12 Fundamentals
- RMS 12 Fundamentals - Contracts Ed 1
- Retail Sales Audit (ReSA) 12 Fundamentals Ed 1
- And many more

Friday, December 12, 2008

Contributions by Angela Golla

As the year end approaches it is a good time to review Oracle's Lifetime Support policy available at this link:

Thursday, December 11, 2008


This posting is not part of our Oracle blog, but my personal appeal for you to consider a favorite charity of mine this holiday season. In a time of recession, with more and more families having a hard time making ends meet, there are times when things come to a crisis point. Just yesterday I was speaking to someone who schedules car repairs for a living and, in the ultimate irony, doesn't have enough money to fix his only car. There's a charity that helps in that kind of crisis, stepping in to help families when it comes to a decision between paying the rent and paying the doctor. It's called Modest Needs, and it works on a unique model. Instead of collecting a mass of money and doling it out to other organizations that help people in need Modest Needs takes requests from people in need, researches them to make sure they are legitimate, and pays the person's problem debt directly to the vendor (that car repair place, for instance, or a person's landlord). You can find out more at

Up and Down, Virtuality, Saving, ASM, The Wall, Flashback, FBI

Better Upgrades Through Downgrades

I always like to be able to back things out. Coskan's Approach to Oracle has a posting today on how to use a utility before doing an 11g upgrade that will allow you to downgrade the EM repository back to a lower level. 

Virtual Book

Eddie Awad links to an excellent Oracle tool today. It lets you create a virtual book on a particular Oracle topic (no, you can't use it to make virtual detective novels, unless they are database forensics mysteries). Here' the link. 

Saving the Green

Everyone is trying to save a buck. The Fusion ECM blog has some good links on ROI and related topics, and how to leverage Web 2.0 into saving money (yes, I know leverage is probably not the best word to use at this point, since that always seems to be what gets us in trouble, leverage, followed by overextension, followed by bubble-popping). Anyway,  the link is here. One of the points it makes is: Like travelling? Well don't! Virtualize meetings. I think there is no doubt about it, the trend is toward more and more virtual meetings. Concalls are useful, but you lose a lot of interpersonal contact without being in a person's presence, so virtual meetings, with ever more accurate representations of the people participating in the meeting, are definitely somewhere in the future, and decreasing travel budgets may actually help push the technology forward.

ASM Striping

Ardent Performance Computing has a good brief posting on clarifying what is entailed in by ASM size here. 

The Wall

Life After Coffee has an interesting find in this post, the Oracle web page I am the Node. I admit that the visual effect made my eyes hurt. I admit that the data it returned was seemingly semirandom, a huge collection of various and sundry items, old and new. But I also enjoyed zapping into things at random to see what popped up. After a bit you learn to stop it spinning around wildly so you can actually read something. This is good, since if you keep looking at the wall in motion for too long you end up looking like the little pod creature orbiting the wall. And no, we don't offer dramamine before visiting the site, though perhaps we should.


An article focusing on a couple of really nifty 11g flashback features at OTN. Flashback is a feature that chews up a lot of storage, but is definitely the best thing since sliced bread. The ability to move whole DBs, or parts thereof, back and forth in time gives the DBA pretentions of godlike power. If you buy your DBA enough storage to implement flashback and then find them pacing the hall muttering: "It's alive!" please medicate them and contact support.


Nah, not the Feds, the function based index. Have you always thought those are tricky? Well, actually, yes, they can be. Richard Foote's blog has an excellent posting on some of the hidden problems that can be encountered with these very handy indexes and statistics.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Humor, PeopleSoft, SQL Developer, JDE Survey, EBS, Tools

Geek Humor

We start off our first issue after the Thanksgiving break with this, from Dark Roasted Blend:

Q: How many Heisenbergs does it take to change a light bulb?
A: If you know the number, you don’t know where the light bulb is.

PeopleSoft Tip

The PeopleSoft Tipster has a good tip for quickly exporting multiple projects here, but perhaps of more interest still is the PeopleSoft wiki that links from the posting.

SQL Developer

SQL Developer is one of those great Oracle products with a name that is, well, not thought out (ever try to search Google for info on SQL Developer? You'll get back half of from the search). But it’s an outstanding product, name and all,  there's a new early adapter release out, as announced by our SQL Developer team:

On Wednesday this week, the SQL Developer team  published and announced on the OTN forum, the second Early Adopter release of Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeling.

Following a successful first early adopter, with over 5000 downloads, many changes were rolled into the second early adopter based on feedback from the internal and external audience. 
  • Use this page on OTN, for access to initial documentation and supporting collateral. This site includes more online demonstrations and sample models, so that you need not have access to a database to view and test data models.
JDE Survey

The JD Edwards Advisor blog ran a poll on future spending on JDE in the face of the current economy. The news is good, overall. Have a read here.

EBS Blog of Note

Want to get EBS release data and other key bits of news and information right from the source? The Oracle E-Business Suite Technology blog is a great place for it! Rather than link to individual items, here's the main page, which you can add through your RSS reader (you, ahem, are using one of those, yes?):

Computer Tools

Eddie Awad's blog has 5 Tools That Make You a More Productive Computer User (not just Oracle users, though we'd appreciate it if you'd at least think about Oracle while using the tools). You can find his posting here.

Webcasts this month


Realize True Cost Savings with Oracle Unbreakable Linux

Tuesday, December 9, 2008 - 3:00 p.m. Eastern/ 12 noon Pacific
Discover how your organization can cut costs and save with Oracle Unbreakable Linux. More details...

Go Green, Save Green with Oracle VM
Thursday, December 11, 2008 - 3:00 p.m. Eastern/12 noon Pacific
Learn how to manage your data more efficiently, economically, and ecologically, while cutting costs with Oracle VM server virtualization. More details...

Middleware for Applications at Your Fingertips
Now available on-demand, this Webcast series dives into how to extend your applications using middleware technologies. More details...

E-Business Suite
Leveraging the Enterprise Service Bus with E-Business Suite
Tune in to this special on-demand Webcast to find out how Oracle Enterprise Service Bus can be used to integrate Oracle E-Business Suite. More details...

Consuming PeopleSoft Web Services in WebCenter
View this on-demand Webcast to learn how to leverage PeopleSoft Web Services to build out dashboards and user interfaces using Oracle WebCenter. More details...

Building a Complex Web Application Using ADF and Siebel
Join Oracle product experts and your peers in this special on-demand Webcast exploring how you can leverage Siebel Web services to build a complex Web application using Oracle ADF. More details...

Expert information on services, products, and technologies comes straight to your desktop through Oracle Web Conferencing.

Oracle E-Business Suite
Dec 10 — E-Business Suite: Release 12 Payments

Oracle Fusion Middleware
Dec 3 — Fusion Middleware: Oracle Forms 10g - Forms Look and Feel Project - EMEA and U.S.

Peoplesoft Enterprise
Dec 9 — PeopleSoft Enterprise Campus Solutions 2009-2010 Financial Aid U.S. Regulatory (Regs) 1
Dec 11 — MetaLink 3 Portal Architecture

JD Edwards EnterpriseOne
Dec 2 — JDE EnterpriseOne: 2008 U.S. W2/1099 Processing Overview
Dec 2 — JDEdwards EnterpriseOne: New Value and Functionality in JD Edwards EnterpriseOne Tools Release 8.98
Dec 3 — JDE EnterpriseOne 9.0 Financial Management and Procurement for Services
Dec 3 — JDE EnterpriseOne: Best Practices: Platform Pack Install on System i
Dec 4 — JDE EnterpriseOne 9.0 Configurator and Kit Processing
Dec 4 — JDE EnterpriseOne: Canadian Payroll Year-End Processing Overview
Dec 4 — JDE EnterpriseOne: Avoiding a Common Issue with the UBE Scheduler
Dec 11 — JDE EnterpriseOne: MetaLink 3 Portal Architecture
Dec 11 — JDE EnterpriseOne 9.0 Real Estate Management
Dec 16 — JDE EnterpriseOne 9.0 Grower, Grower Pricing & Payments, Blend Management
Dec 17 — JDE EnterpriseOne Human Capital Management 9.0
Dec 18 — Using Oracle BI Publisher to Create JD Edwards EnterpriseOne Reports

JD Edwards World
Dec 4 —
JDE World: Preparing for Year-End Processing and W-2 Reporting Season
Dec 9 —
JDE World: 1099 Process Refresher for 2008 - Changes and Address Book
Dec 10 —
JDE World: 1099 Process Refresher for 2008 - AP Method/Write Media
Dec 10 —
JDE World: Preparing for Year-End Processing and W-2 Reporting Season
Dec 11 — JDE World: 1099 Process Refresher for 2008 - G/L Method/Write Media
Dec 11 — MetaLink 3 Portal Architecture
Dec 16 — JDE World: Preparing for Canadian T4 & Releve Reporting: Year-End Processes

View Advisor Webcast schedule for Oracle E-Business Suite, Server Tech and Communication Applications

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Contributions by Angela Golla

Protect your data at the sourceSecurity Inside Out

In today's digital world, the corporate databases in which you store your data are the most valuable assets in your enterprise, and must be protected more than ever before. Whether you need to tackle privacy issues, internal threats, external theft or compliance requirements, the most effective way to safeguard your data is to start at the source: your databases. Join us for our upcoming series of live Database Security web seminars to learn how Oracle can help you quickly deploy effective strategies to safeguard your corporate data. More information is available at:

Official, Youbetcha Legalese

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