By: Sandeep Sharma
ERP evolution to Shipping business Models using Gamification ,Augumented Reality ,IoT and cloud evolution is Shapping Future of ERP and Technology challenges behind
Business is Changing So is ERP. Digital Transformation then rapid change which using digital dwarfs other Business Models quickly.
Few years back When Harward Organisation behaviour professor Henry Mintzberg wrote a Book Managers Not MBA needed and founded institute of practising managers. As he found increasing disconnect between what is taught and practised.
Today most Research based Learning and curriculum made really specialized to next league is there is not research input into Management thinking hence ERP thinking ERP hence Business Model thinking the business becomes irrelevant.
ERP are moving to next class rather shipping modules or submodules it about shipping your business model with agile technology. Agile I mean is business Agility to adopt to new business models and technology landscape.
Today’s business is all about changing business Model fast So ERP driving This using better pervasiveness into machine to ERP intelligence using IoT and visualisation using Augumented Relality and Data science shows future of your strategy vs my strategy into A Game. A game like two golf player in parallel visualizing using augumented reality and similulation whose business Strategy is better over Golf game.
Increasing as business getting more complex the in every segment new business model will emerge fast. The longitivity of business model is also shrinking. Earlier if you had a business model you could run whole business on that model for let say 50 yrs now it’s may be 4 yrs… So Bussiness models need to change fast to survive. How is ERP Helping us in this Exercise we have seen in last paragraph.
Also I have Explained in Last parts using Technology Shift , business Model shift enabled in ERP.
At the layer ERP is internally yet another BPM+ functionality where business flow is captured. BPM now Eats IoT messages and queues them for ingestion in cloud where then data science runs over them To create models for decision making it change which is deriving strategic insights using Mathematical models.
Not only that But business models are also changing which are reflective of sometime Mathematical models. We know Algorithmic trading transformed Finance. This That trading getting pervasive into other industry now.
Are Algorithmic business Models using this mathematical conotations is new buzzword. We have algorithm driven CRM systems having recommendations systems rather than shop floor assistant.
New Age Enterprise Software in cloud.
Interesting to see how salesforce.com is growing from CRM into other verticals. Already cornering many CRM vendors like Siebel, SAP CRM, and Oracle Peoplesoft CRM.Same way Workday is growing fast in HR solutions.Are there ERP based on cloud threat to traditional vendors.Now industry is segmented into two types of ERP : Tradition ERP Vs Cloud based ERP.
Let’s look why Traditional ERP are facing the brunt:
Let see evolution : ERP evolved from desktop based systems to client server system in 90’s to web based systems then So SAP R3 like three tier product (database server-application server- webserver –client).We had lots of security challenges then also. Next went to n-tier where we had choice of n number of application server layers. Then today we are faced with 2 question Cloud enablement and mobility.(of course these are not the only challenge there are others too).
- Biggest impact ERP made to life of Executives is Time to market. Now see today if Any cloud ERP provider has to do mobile enablement it just few steps while for traditional ERP giving form to future cloud based browser is big problem.SAP had to acquire company like Sybase still integration is not complete.
- The big vendors are vulnerable because they require big expensive upgrades. Workday doesn’t go into startups — it’s selling to big companies that have HR and financial software in place. But companies have to update this software periodically, and the traditional vendors like Oracle and SAP make it hard and expensive to upgrade. That’s when startups like Workday jump in.
- Oracle will survive the cloud transition, but will have to acquire some companies. He thinks NetSuite, which is already majority-owned by Larry Ellison, is a logical candidate.
- SAP is toast. “I think SAP doesn’t really have a play.”.ABAP language on which ERP is based is old based on COBOL syntaxes has evolved into Object Orientation with lot of effort.Sonetweaver came in to enable java to work for ABAP.But Oracle the biggest competitor acquired Sun hence Java. So, now SAP wanted to remove all dependency from Java.See simple thing like JSP /ASP like technology which is very old came into java just 2 yrs back with BSP in ABAP.Otherwise in SAP Netweaver used to the work through JSP(Netweaver is J2EE server only).Now how many years it will take to remove dependency.SAP acquired Sybase to provide mobility solution but still SAP mobility has long way to tread.Then where is cloud. I agree Enterprise software lifecycle being longer company does not suddenly decide to replace in Peoplesoft HRMS with another package.Atleast 1 year in implementation and second year in stabilisation.
- Don’t underestimate Microsoft but competition is hotting up like iWork from apple. He thinks the company really gets the cloud, and that Windows 8 will easily become the second-biggest category of tablets — simply because they will run Office, while the iPad never will. “If I could get Office on a tablet, I’d throw my laptop away.” He also thinks that Microsoft’s army of .NET developers will move to Azure, the company’s cloud platform.iPad is also warming up with iWork office suite on mobile. Micorsoft is moving fast on Axcepta coming up with CRM, Financial, SCM modules. collaboration with sharepoint,oulook,messenger integration,integrated SQL server based MSBI and reporting.Available everything on cloud Azure.WCF, WWF fighting with workflow software.
- Google will make a bigger enterprise play eventually. Google more focused on consumer and advertising play facing facebook. Enterpriseis Google’s “secret weapon” and noted that he sees a lot of companies considering a switch to Gmail at the same time as they switch to Workday.
- Workday: Former Peoplesoft CEO made Cloud HR AneelBhusri,Dave reading up challenge for major vendors
Future of Flex &Flash : Gamification of ERP enterprise software, Augmented Reality on mobile apps, ipTV
Adobe modern introduction , history of innovations, trends of future:
Adobe outdoing competition for many years now has system in place for bringing future technologies like IPTV(http://blogs.adobe.com/flashplatform/tag/iptv), mobile/tablet OS interfaces, photo editors like Photoshop, Word editors like Acrobat reader with compressed storage .Adobe has company which have been working ahead of time many years in many technology are like Acrobat reader, Photoshop with image processing algorithm implementations for naive users ,for online picture editor for image enhancements using image processing algorithms(http://pixlr.com/editor/), Flex for AJAX/RIA. Flash presented good threat to Microsoft as instead of writing to OS people can write to Flash same reason why Steve Jobs took stand against Flash. Adobe hence started to silent revolution of RIA.
Photoshop, Illustrator, and the other design products in its Creative Suite make up more than 50% of Adobe’s revenue and have created a lot of loyalists. Adobe presence in unified communication with its connect platform for online meetings which competes with Microsoft live meeting and communication server (renamed Lync). People most often create documents using Word processing software but once those documents need to be stored in a fixed format for printing and official forms, they’re almost always converted to Adobe’s PDF format.Micorsoft XPS never stood competition against PDF format.
Adobe Flex is a popular framework for building Rich Internet Applications (RIAs). The Flex framework is used to create SWF files that run inside the Adobe Flash Player
Today when we will see higher adoption of IP TV in future Adobe is well positioned to take on. Earlier Adobe flex write once and run on any browser (need not worry browser dependency) to today write once run on any device (Android, IPhone, or any tablet OS).
Technology is continuously evolving. Never people thought before AJAX came in that all system will web based. As in earlier system Client server system web client wait for completion for each request till then browser hangs. With coming of AJAX Asynchronous request does not need to wait for reply from Server for completion of request. Today what we See from Website to ERP like SAP PeopleSoft ,oracle apps ,to Business intelligence systems virtually every UI is Web Based. AJAX increased adoption of Web across different platform devices and interfaces. Across all this technologies the best choice of UI ends at flex.
Flex came with more intuitive UI which never existed before like slider control, control for embedding video tag which later on HTML 5 could bring in 5 yrs later. So adobe was working 5 yrs ahead of time.
Competition to Flex :
Technology wise competition to Flex include Curl, OpenLaszlo, Ajax, Mozilla way back in 2002 introduced XUL ,from Sun Microsystem JavaFX, Microsoft Windows Presentation Foundation, Silverlight and HTML5. Examine the trend graph over period of time. HTML5 popularity has dwarfed competition as it is open source and work across platform.
Figure 2: source: trends.google.com showing search trends Flex competitors or related technology.
– Flex had moved to new battled field Devices. Is new java of devices write once and run on any device android, iPhone blackberry or any tablet OS.
– Enterprise class programming Model: Use of constructs like strong typing, inheritance, and interfaces to program more efficiently. Extensive mobile and traditional components help speed development. Flex applications can access device capabilities such as GPS, accelerometer, camera, and local database.
– End to End tooling for development: Build Flex applications more easily using Adobe® Flash® Builder® software, an enterprise-class Eclipse™ based IDE. Productivity features include on-device debugging and mobile simulators for testing across screen sizes and resolutions.
– Server Integration: Integrate with all major back ends including Java™, Spring, Hibernate, PHP, Ruby, .NET, Adobe ColdFusion®, and SAP using industry standards such as REST, SOAP, JSON, JMS, and AMF, PeopleSoft.
– AJAX design patterns: On Object oriented programming on Action scripts design pattern are readily available.
Even software claims today integration with flex for choice of UI whether its ERP like PeopleSoft or SAP, Oracle Apps, or Business intelligence system like SAP Business objects Excelsious, IBM Cognos flex interfaces. Each day new Members join group each day product realize it needs to provide interface to flex joins flex group.I remember on Cognos 8.0 did not had features like geographic reporting interfaces, intuitive grids with dynamic sorting and grouping ,maps etc which only after integration with flex were possible for BI . had no choice but to integrate Flex. I recommend everyone at least one download tour de flex and see the dynamic UI.I am sure you will start loving it. From YouTube to Google finance or yahoo finance everywhere you can see innovation of Flex controls.
Figure 2: source Finance.google.com (showing comparison of Adobe,Microsoft and Dow Jones index.
On contrary HTML5 is not threat but opportunity for Adobe Flex :
But Adobe has the most to gain if they become the major player in the HTML5 field by providing tools, framework and making the web standards evolve. And they are in a good position to get there.Adobe has already two great tools for HTML5, Muse and Edge.
HTML5 fight with Flex is on : Adobe online games are beating HTML5 with over 1000 games written compared with few hundred on HTML5. HTML5 is already almost universally supported in mobile browsers and Adobe realized that Flash would never get that ubiquity across browsers. HTML is supported by 40% of web Browsers while Flash 99%.Feature supported are browser dependent with no 3D support while flash has plugin. Security: Flash is miles ahead: In order to hack HTML5 Right click view source while in flash you need to get swf file which is loaded through wrapper parent then hacker needs to go through 2 layers of encryption and obfuscation.Majority flash book games are flash. With Flex 4.5 SDK build and deploy applications for Google Android, Apple iOS and BlackBerry Tablet OS platforms leverage one tool, one framework and one codebase to deliver apps across leading mobile platforms, not to mention web and desktop as well
But then reality is still HTML5 has more issues with Andriod and iOS while Flex has few.
Flex is HTML 5 + more:à Flex is no.1 choice for enterprise complex, high-fidelity enterprise applications such as business dashboards, line of business tools, real-time trading applications and desktop replacement applications, and see leading companies in healthcare, financial services, communications and other industries standardizing on it.HTML5 has not matured yet. Flex is a choice for following reason:
- SDK and Compiler open sourced MPL license, HTML 5 open standard WHATWG license , Adobe + on Flex new 3d – graphics,(transformation scene, camera, lighting, change pixel data ,effects)
- Real-time connection(HTML5 has websocket vs Flex has flash.net.socket) ,Drag and Drop (drag and drop across application, cross document, clipboard) with API’s flash.desktop.clipboard,Events.NativeDragevents,Flash.desktop.TransferableData Vs HTML5 DataTransfer and DragEvent.
- Adobe provide better file system (in HTML5 input type upload storage api vs Flex has File, FileStream, Filemode) (read/write capabilities), Offline Access Adobe air provides Resource(Windows application Vs Application cache) State(air.Event.NETWORK_CHANGE_URLMonitor vs navigator online,)
Data (flash.data.SQLConnection vs HTML5 has Database,SQLTransaction,SQLResultSet,LocalStorage.
New HTML 5 products which also use Action scripts as base new HTML5 products, Adobe Muse(TM) and Adobe Edge preview.
Cloud: Adobe’s creative tablet applications+, such as Photoshop Touch, into everyday work – seamlessly synchronizing and storing files in the cloud for sharing and access on any device
Adobe Typekit launched in Oct 2011 , the Web-based font library that pioneered the use of real fonts on websites, delivering more than 700 typefaces from leading foundries.
Adobe Edge, a ground-breaking HTML5 development tool; and Digital Publishing Suite Single Edition, the technology behind the delivery of digital magazines on iPad.
Adobe new Open source strategy: As Flex moves into a community-driven open source project, Adobe will make initial technical contributions and will also continue to provide a team of full-time Flex SDK engineers to contribute to the Apache project.
Adobe is currently in the process of contributing the core Flex SDK (including advanced data visualization components), automation libraries, AIR SDK binaries, documentation, and specifications to the Apache Flex Project.Also contribute yet-to-be-released Spark components including ViewStack, Accordion, DateField, DataChooser, and an enhanced DataGrid.Other future contribution to project include Falcon JS new compiler for action script,Mustella a functional testing framework, BlazeDS code is already available at adobe.com/go/blazeds_source under the GNU Lesser General Public License, Version 3.
BlazeDS provides Java based server-side remoting and web messaging technology allowing Flex clients to exchange typed binary data with the server and receive notification from other clients and servers. The messaging service also allows Flex applications to exchange messages with other non Flex, JMS-enabled applications.
Flex Sparks components and the recent addition of the new mobile components provide a great and mature framework basis for a real open source effort
Next generation Experiments on Flex.
- Gamification of Enterprise Software like ERP,BI,BPM etc : Enterprise gamification to date has really been about marketing and customer engagement. By gamification it introduces unrealized concepts of social collaboration and create the ad hoc collaboration,engagement metaphor help companies realize these lofty social/collaborative goals. people are more engaged, more able to understand and support the outcomes that matter to the enterprise, and they are being recognized and rewarded for these actions. Adobe with Flash based online games and enterprise grade Flex development platform is greatly positioned for that.
- Augumented Reality:
Augmented reality (AR) is a field of computer science that involves combining the physical world and an interactive, three-dimensional virtual world. For a complete project with Flash on AR visit