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BEA World 2006: Beijing Day One

Bill Roth Blogs Live from the Keynote Hall in China

Day one of BEA World started out with the usual fanfare at a packed hall, and our Liquid Thinking video in Chinese. The master of ceremonies was Sichen Yu, one of the key technical people in China. Marcus Tsoi, the General Manager of our China business then kicked the day off by welcoming and thinking out sponsors.

He then introduced Steve Au Yeung, who runs the entire APAC region for us. Steve talked about the growth in several countries in APAC, not just China, including India and others. He then introduced Alfred Chuang, our CEO and Chairman. He stressed the importance of SOA, and talked about how we were going to prove it by bringing up partners and customers to show how they are working with BEA and delivering SOA. China is changing the world, he said, if only edvidenced by the cranes outside the China World Hotel, where the show is being held. China's grown creates opportunities, and some challenges. We also mentioned that nearly 85% of the repondents in a recent survey of IT managers were doing something with SOA. He discussed this importance of SOA to business and the value the it provides and how it makes a business more agile, and how it puts business back in charge of IT.

Alfred suggested it was naive to say that enterprise applciations could mirror the way people work. People don't work that way. They use multiple applications, including spreadsheets, MS Word, etc. There is one company who that had 25 steps across multiple systems, just in order to process a mortgage. It was a mess, largely becuase of the insertion of packages apps into the mix. In order to prove the point, Alfred brought Blake Connell up (Director of Product Marketing). He started by demoing the Liquid Workspaces notion. He presented a workspace for a sales person, which aggregates all the information relevant for a sales rep. He then showed how you can provide a 360 degree view to show how a sales rep can view all the information about a contact. This is done by aggregating the informastion from all the back end enterprise systems into the user interface. Its key to note that BEA offers options on how to do integration. Blake and Alfred showed how you can use our portal products to do integration at the user level, but with products like WLI and ALSB, we can also to backend integration of existing back-end assets.

Blake then showed how we can not only integrate systems, but get people more integrated as well. Using technology from our AquaLogic User Interaction product line, we can allow people to collaborate at new levels, improving business response time. Alfred and Blake then showed how BEA and SOA can be used in supporting capital markets.

Alfred then showed something comletely new, BEA Guardian. Guardian is our product which pro-actively looks at your systems, and notifies you of many problems, before they happen.

Alfred talked about SOA 360, which is our vision for the unified  development, deployment and management environment across our three product lines. Its based on the mircoServices Architecture, which is a microKernel based architecture which much of the BEA product line with migrate to in the next few years. HE then talked about Workspace 360, which we announced an BEA World SF. This is our vision of how it will be possible to bring the Developer, Architect, IT Ops manager, and the business analysts at one table so they can collaborate, and build better SOA based systems, faster and at a lower total cost.

Carl Eberling, CIO of Verizon

Carl started as a developer, and rose through the ranks. Verizon Wireless has 57 million subscribers and 65,000 employees. It is a joint venture between Verizon and Vodaphone. He mentioned that they spend 1.7% of revenue on IT, while their customer base has grown 40%. So his cost pressure is intense. Carl talked about how Verizon merge a bunch of companies and a bunch of billing systems into one portal, www.verizonwireless.com, all running on BEA WebLogic Server. Because he has to offer 2-3 product releases per week, he needs a flexible system.

This is largely becuase of the nature of his business and their intent to povide a personalized experience to the customer. He mentioned that their new sources of revenue have been around data traffic, and that voice revenues have been flat. His web site handles 26 million users amd does 30M transactions per month. One of his key initiatives is that he has to reduce the load on his development staff, so he can provide more services with less. Reuse is key to his operations and the principles of SOA are a boon to him. He also has to integration this into their ongoing mobility

The next presentation was in Chinese from the People's Bank of China, and my translation headset was dead, so I did not follow the presentaion. Intel then presenting its vision around Enterprise 2.0. I covered this in San Francisco, and you can read about it here.

More Stories By Bill Roth

Bill Roth is a Silicon Valley veteran with over 20 years in the industry. He has played numerous product marketing, product management and engineering roles at companies like BEA, Sun, Morgan Stanley, and EBay Enterprise. He was recently named one of the World's 30 Most Influential Cloud Bloggers.

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