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Will JavaOne Keynote Reveal How Oracle Proposes Coming from Behind?
Will JavaOne Keynote Reveal How Oracle Proposes Coming from Behind?

(March 25, 2002) - JavaOne brings each year an abundance of the sort of developer who relish refactoring, is excited about edge-side caching, enjoys J2EE clustering, and wonders about Web services. And it is these Java and Web services developers that Oracle will be targeting through its various activities all week.

As befits a Platinum Sponsor of the show, Oracle will also be keynoting. The moment Scott McNealy steps off the main platform after his keynote on Tuesday, Oracle's Thomas Kurian will step on. Kurian, who is senior VP of Oracle9i Application Server product development, will address Java developers on how to be successful with J2EE and Web services development and deployment. Using 9iAS of course - Oracle's complete solution for building, deploying and maintaining self-service, integrated enterprise portals.

(Not for nothing did Oracle CFO Jeff Henley last month call 9iAS Oracle's "biggest revenue opportunity for 2002.")

Kurian played a key role in bringing Oracle8i, the previous release of Oracle's market leading database server, to market. He has also served as Oracle's VP of E-Business, driving a number of company-wide initiatives focused on transforming Oracle itself into an e-business. So he's just the man to remind JavaOne delegates that, through its Oracle Technology Network (OTN), the company now claims to be reaching one million members with its message, mission, and products.

Developers attending JavaOne will be able to receive a free Oracle9i Application Server Developer Preview CD. This has the latest version of Oracle9i Application Server Release 2 with J2EE 1.3 support and Oracle9i JDeveloper.

Will Larry Ellison be at JavaOne? Well, don't hold your breath. Oracle's own annual show follows just next month, and the chairman and CEO will be keeping his powder dry till then, allowing Kurian and his fellow executives to fly the flag. It isn't just that Redwood Shores is probably a nicer place to hang out than a San Francisco overrun by Java geeks, there's also the small question of his having publicly said last year to BEA cofounder Bill Coleman (the B in BEA) - on the main JavaOne keynote platform - "Lets have a race to see who gets to 1.3 first," a race that Oracle in fact lost.

BEA knew full well that vendors who wish to embrace Web services need J2EE 1.3 certification, and got there first, as did IBM. As befits the owner of 24% of the company he describes as "the world's largest enterprise software company," Ellison is passionate about winning and doesn't like to lose at golf, let alone a mission-critical self-imposed competition with his Californian arch-rival.

According to the latest report by Giga Information Group, Oracle ranked behind BEA, IBM, and even Sun - staking out in 2001 only a 6% share of the overall application server market. So it will be very interesting to hear what Kurian has to say in his keynote about the certification issue, and about just how Oracle proposes to catch up in the great headlong industry rush to Web services.

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JDJ News Desk monitors the world of Java to present IT professionals with updates on technology advances, business trends, new products and standards in the Java and i-technology space.

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