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5 Key Takeaways from Oracle OpenWorld 2019

Oracle just concluded Oracle OpenWorld 2019, its annual user conference hosted in San Francisco. Larry Ellison, Chairman, and CTO of Oracle Corporation is more bullish about the company’s cloud strategy than ever.

Larry’s keynote focused on the core differentiating factors of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. He claimed that only Oracle has the best cloud infrastructure, platform, and SaaS offerings. Ellison emphasized on the enhancements made to Gen 2 Cloud Infrastructure, Autonomous Database, and some of the new services such as the Digital Assistant Bot and a Machine Learning platform.

Here are five key takeaways from the recently concluded Oracle OpenWorld 2019.

1. Enhanced Autonomous Database

Oracle Autonomous Database is a “self-driving” database technology that automates upgrading, patching, and performing tuning tasks. The revolutionary database engine offers total automation based on machine learning and eliminates human labor, human error, and manual tuning.

Oracle Autonomous Database is a cloud service running the Oracle 18c database engine. While many automated capabilities of Oracle Database are available both on-premises and in the cloud, a number of autonomous elements are unique to the Oracle Cloud.

Oracle now offers a dedicated deployment option for Oracle Autonomous Database. This new deployment option provides customers with the highest levels of security, reliability, and operational control for any class of database workload. 

Oracle also announced a new release of Enterprise Manager, a tool that customers use to manage Oracle database, that provides expanded support for Oracle Autonomous Database.

2. Autonomous Linux OS

Oracle has extended the promise of the autonomous database to its flagship Linux operating system. The company claims that Oracle Autonomous Linux, along with the new Oracle OS Management Service, is the first and only autonomous operating environment that helps greatly reduce complexity and human error to deliver increased cost savings, security, and availability for customers.

Autonomous Linux is based on Oracle Linux, an OS that’s binary-compatible with Red Hat Enterprise Linux, which allows Red Hat customers to easily port applications to Oracle Cloud.

The new Linux OS from Oracle automates patching and upgrades even while the system is running. This automation reduces unnecessary and costly downtime to applications. Since it reduces human errors, it achieves higher availability and an increased system and application reliability.

Oracle has also introduced Oracle OS Management Service, a highly available Oracle Cloud Infrastructure service that enables customers to automate server management.

3. VMware Cloud Foundation on Oracle Cloud

Oracle and VMware jointly announced the availability of Oracle Cloud VMware Solution that enables customers to migrate on-premises VMware environments to Oracle Gen2 Cloud Infrastructure. 

Oracle Cloud VMware Solution will include VMware vSphere, VMware NSX-T, VMware vSAN, and, optionally, VMware HCX. The software will be deployed on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure following the VMware standard of 3+ bare metal hosts using a VMware Validated Design (VVD) architecture and on VMware certified hardware.

This is a huge step for VMware as it now becomes available in all major cloud platforms including AWS, Google Cloud Platform, IBM Cloud, Microsoft Azure, and now Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. 

Unlike other VMware environments in the public clouds, Oracle Cloud VMware Solution is not a fully managed service. Customers will need to manage their VMware infrastructure running within Oracle Cloud.

4. An Enterprise-grade Digital Assistant Bot

Oracle announced the availability of its AI-trained voice with Oracle Digital Assistant, an enterprise-grade conversational user experience that understands the context better than Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Siri. 

Oracle’s intelligent voice assistant for the enterprise brings conversational AI to new applications by analyzing enterprise-specific and domain-specific vocabulary on which open and consumer-oriented domain models are not trained on. The company claims that its digital assistant is the only enterprise digital assistant on the market today that makes voice and user interactions more expressive by processing complex queries and deriving intelligence from available enterprise applications.

Built on Oracle’s next-generation infrastructure, Oracle Digital Assistant applies AI with deep semantic parsing for natural language processing (NLP), natural language understanding (NLU) and custom machine learning (ML) algorithms. This combination allows Oracle Digital Assistant to understand a user’s natural conversation, derive intent, produce compositional logical forms, and identify and learn user behavior patterns in order to proactively take action on behalf of the user. 

Oracle’s no-code tool allows enterprises to build conversational experiences based on Oracle Digital Assistant. The technology can also integrate with human agent work-flows and business processes without any coding required.

5. Free Tier for Oracle Cloud Infrastructure

Oracle was often criticized for the complexity involved in accessing its cloud platform. The company addressed this through the availability of a new free tier that offers a set of free services to users. 

The free tier adds a new set of “always free” services to OCI – including Always Free Oracle Autonomous Database – and converges them with Oracle’s existing $300, 30-day free trial program into a new unified free tier now available worldwide.

The new tier includes two Oracle Autonomous Databases with tools like Oracle Application Express (APEX) and Oracle SQL Developer. It also includes two Oracle Cloud Infrastructure compute VMs, block storage devices, object storage and backup storage along with a load balancer and data egress.

According to Oracle, developers can access the always free resources as long as they want with no time constraints—subject only to the capacity limits noted. When the 30-day trial period for the expanded set of services ends, they continue using the free services with no interruption.

Bonus: A Brand New Look

Oracle utilized the OpenWorld conference to unveil its new branding which is simple and refreshing. Moving away from its trademark red-colored logo and theme, the new branding uses pastel colors and a minimalistic approach to the design.

Oracle’s new branding codenamed Redwood was visible everywhere – from the stage backdrop to the website to even its cloud management portal. The new website is highly inspired by Asian, African and Origami art.

Through the new branding, Oracle wants to become more accessible and friendlier to modern developers and startups that don’t represent the company’s traditional customer base.


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