Enterprise headlines and summaries, 2009-09-11

  • SAP Receives PennFuture Green Power Award for Sustainable Practices
    Public-interest organization Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future (PennFuture) has recognized SAP AG with a “Green Power” award for sustainable practices at the company’s Newtown Square, Pa., North American headquarters campus. The award, presented at a ceremony in Philadelphia on September 10, recognized SAP for its annual purchase of 19 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of wind-generated Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) for its Newtown Square location and its pursuit of the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum status for its recent headquarters expansion. The wind-energy purchase offsets more than 80 percent of the electricity needs of the campus and reduces SAP’s carbon footprint by more than 22,000 tons. This effort supports SAP’s aggressive carbon reduction target of going back to year-2000 levels by 2020, representing a nearly 50 percent reduction from SAP’s 2007 carbon emissions (see “SAP Increases Focus on Sustainable
  • Oracle: IBM, Come Out to Play-ee-ay
    [Best ’70s pop reference of the week (The Warriors)!-DBM] Welcome news for Sun (JAVA) engineers worried they might lose their jobs as a result of Oracle’s (ORCL) surprise acquisition of the company. Bad news for rivals like Dell (DELL), HP (HPQ), and, of course, IBM (IBM). Clearly, Oracle plans to make their lives a lot more difficult.
  • Should I upgrade to R12 or should I wait for Fusion?
    If you are on 11.5.10, happy with extended support and would not benefit from any of the functionality available in R12, then yes you can wait.
  • Red Hat Fortifies Channel Partner Program
    Open source software developer Red Hat Inc., riding a six-fold uptick in partner membership, recently bolstered its channel program by adding a new top tier, three specializations and a raft of sales, marketing and technical benefits available to qualified participants. Company officials said that the program redesign was prompted by the vendor’s desire for its partner community—which has swelled from 250 members to some 1,500 in the past three years—to collaborate with one another to build innovative solutions.
  • Survey: VMware, Red Hat to claim more IT dollars
    While the percentage of CIOs expecting to increase IT spending has grown since Goldman Sachs‘ last survey in June 2009, a full 69 percent expect to maintain or decrease their IT spending.
  • 6 dirty tricks from enterprise vendors
    The magic demo. Using presentation slides and canned demonstrations, the vendor claims to solve the customer’s most challenging problems. It’s all good, except when there is no real product to back up the promises.
  • Ning’s App Strategy
    The service is launching with 90 applications, ranging from entertainment sites like Hulu to e-commerce services from IAC’s Ticketmaster. The new apps allow Ning networks to do more with their communities, like streaming video from Ustream or Qik, or selling crafts on Etsy. That should help draw new communities to the site and boost traffic on existing ones. Building Web page views is a critical component of Ning’s business plan; the company is valued at a lofty $750 million following a $15 million investment in July from Lightspeed Venture Partners.
  • Twitter’s New Terms of Service
    Ownership—Twitter is allowed to “use, copy, reproduce, process, adapt, modify, publish, transmit, display and distribute” your tweets because that’s what we do. However, they are your tweets and they belong to you. APIs—The apps that have grown around the Twitter platform are flourishing and adding value to the ecosystem. You authorize us to make content available via our APIs. We’re also working on guidelines for use of the API.
  • Oracle Has Customers Over a Barrel
    As CEO Ellison tries to extend the company’s reach into hardware, more corporate clients fret about its high prices and tough tactics
  • Oracle Says It Will Keep Sun Hardware, Challenges IBM
    In a full-page newspaper advertisement, Oracle officials say they will spend more money than Sun on developing and selling SPARC/Solaris hardware once they close the $7.4 billion deal for Sun. In the same ad, they also challenge IBM, which along with HP has been aggressively courting Sun customers who may have concerns about Oracle’s bid.
  • OpenCalais Brings Semantic Metatagging to Oracle Databases
    OpenCalais, a semantic web service from Thomson-Reuters, has announced a deal to integrate OpenCalais into the Oracle Database 11g Release 2, giving Oracle customers programmatic access to the OpenCalais metatagging service.
  • RSSCloud Vs. PubSubHubbub: Why The Fat Pings Win
    Both PuSH and rssCloud address a fundamental flaw in the way web applications work today. Currently, getting updates on the web requires constant polling. Subscribers are forced to act like nagging children asking, “Are we there yet?” Subscribers must constantly ping the publisher to ask if there are new updates even if the answer is “no” 99% of the time. This is terribly inefficient, wastes resources, and makes it incredibly hard to find new content in as soon as it appears. Both protocols flip the current model on its head so that updates are event driven rather than request driven. By that I mean that both protocols eliminate the need for polling by essentially telling subscribers, “Don’t ask us if there’s anything new. We’ll tell you.”
  • The price of failure is plummeting, thanks to technology
    But now the ability to quickly test and deploy new innovations is available to all types of businesses. Technology has made experimentation quick cheap, and easy, Erik Brynjolfsson and Michael Schrage state in a recent article in MIT Sloan Management Review. For example, with a Website, “companies can test out a new feature with a quick bit of programming and see how users respond. The change can then be replicated on billions of customer screens.” This capability can be extended to supply chain management and customer relationship management systems as well.

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