Oracle Outlines Ambitious Cloud Application Agenda

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At their OpenWorld event this year, Oracle laid out a machine learning and blockchain -driven cloud effort for their clients.

Oracle this week outlined a series of initiatives that promise to make a broad range of emerging technologies such as machine learning algorithms, blockchain database, and conversational digital assistants much more accessible to enterprise IT organizations.

Launched at the Oracle OpenWorld 2018 conference, all these emerging technologies will initially be made available via the Oracle Cloud application portfolio before being added to the on-premises editions of Oracle’s applications.

Specifically, Oracle plans to make extensive use of machine and deep learning algorithms within Oracle applications to alert users to relevant events as they occur in real time. Those events can be surfaced either as alerts or via the conversational interfaces Oracle plans to make pervasively available.

Oracle as part of that effort unfurled this week Oracle Fusion Analytics Warehouse, which is an instance of Oracle Analytics software running on the Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse that Oracle provides as a managed service that can be deployed in the cloud or in an on-premises IT environment.

See also: Oracle brings smart grid and IoT management to the cloud

Oracle this week also touted blockchain technologies it is now making available as part of its supply chain management (SCM) portfolio. Oracle previously made available a blockchain service on its cloud. Oracle is now moving to make blockchain technologies that provide an immutable database for tracking provenance and shipments across an extended supply chain a core part of the Oracle SCM application.

Finally, Oracle this week also extended its ambitions in the realm of cybersecurity by adding cloud services that include a Web Application Firewall (WAF), Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) protection, Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) and a Key Management Service (KMS) to encrypt data.

While Oracle continues to be committed to applications deployed in on-premises IT environments, company CEO Mark Hurd made it clear Oracle expects the preponderance of applications will eventually be deployed in the cloud. At the conference this week Hurd predicted 85 percent of production applications will run in the cloud by 2025. In addition, Hurd adds that within that same time frame 100 percent of all applications will be infused with AI and 85 percent of all interactions with customers will be automated.

Oracle expects to provide a significant portion of those application services now that the Oracle database has been optimized for the cloud, says Juergen Lindner, senior vice president of SaaS for Oracle.

“There is no other purpose-built database designed for the cloud,” says Linder.

While some rivals make take issue with that contention it is clear Oracle sees the rise of AI as a force that shifts more applications into the cloud. Machine and deep learning algorithms require access to massive amounts of data to learn how a process works. For all practical purposes, the only place to aggregate all the data cost-effectively is in the cloud.

Of course, it remains to be seen to what degree organizations will want to build their own AI applications versus simply consuming those capabilities within the context of a packaged application delivered as a cloud service. But if history is any guide, most end users will be exposed to AI via a packaged application delivered by a vendor such as Oracle long before any internal IT team gets around to mastering how to train and deploy AI models.

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