IT News

Posted on 6 Jul 2011 by The Manufacturer

The latest news from the IT sector.

SAP increases global availability of HANA
Enterprise application software provider SAP has announced a global rollout of its new generation of analytics, business applications and IT simplification software.

The basis behind the introduction of the new appliance software is a new paradigm of ‘real’ real-time computing that allows companies to re-think their existing business challenges while tackling entirely new ones.

Dubbed High-Performance Analytic Appliance (HANA), the technology has been described as ‘a breakthrough’, enabling customers to analyse and explore data in real-time.

As well as announcing worldwide availability of its HANA appliance software, SAP also reported that Mitsui, the Japanese trading company, has selected SAP HANA.

The company follows a long list of large firms and groups all over the world to adopt the appliance software.

Conceived last spring, HANA was delivered to select customers in late 2010 and on June 21 was made available to all customers. SAP HANA has one of the fastest growing sales figures for any new products releases in the company’s history.

“General availability is a major milestone for SAP HANA, but this is just the beginning,” said SAP executive board member Dr. Vishal Sikka.

“SAP HANA brings a fundamental transformation to the way companies run their businesses and is at the heart of innovation across our entire product and technology portfolio at SAP. I look forward to [reaching] the next milestones … building breakthrough new applications and building out the SAP HANA application cloud to deliver them,” he added.

Infor reports annual growth in total license revenue of 28%
Enterprise application vendor Infor has reported that organic license revenue for Q4 2011 was 12% above 2010 Q4’s figure of $453.7m.

The accelerated growth was driven forward by the introduction of new products, resulting in more than 650 new customers for the vendor in Q4 2011. Among the new products and releases that Infor has delivered over the past six months are: Infor ERP LN, Infor ERP SyteLine, Infor ERP VISUAL, Infor ERP Adage, Infor FMS SunSystems Enterprise, Infor EAM, Infor Performance Management (PM) and Infor Sales and Operations Planning (S and OP).

Infor’s main drivers of growth in Q4 2011 were: 35% annual growth in enterprise resource planning (ERP), 84% annual growth in business intelligence and performance management, 125% annual growth in the public sector, and 33% annual growth in distribution.

“Our recently developed ION integration platform is generating excitement and momentum with our customers. Our slate of innovative new product and technology releases, combined with our industry-focused approach, is truly separating us from our competitors,” said Stephan Scholl, executive vice president of field operations at Infor.

Infor’s president of products, marketing and support Duncan Angove added: “The new consumergrade user interface, enhanced and deep functionality in our target verticals and out of the box integration are proving to be a winning combination for customers in all geographies.”

Aspentech releases technology to solve problems on the move
Process manufacturing specialist Aspentech has released two new pieces of software for smartphones, as well as a new version of its aspenONE engineering software.

Using Aspen IP.21 Mobile and the company’s properties mobile software, customers with leading SmartPhones are able to resolve operational performance issues on the go, providing access to accurate property calculations for over 24,000 chemicals via iPhone and iPad devices.

“The application provides us with a tool to aid collaboration in process development and to support decision making in our scale-up facilities,” said Eric Cordi, senior principal scientist at pharmaceutical giant Pfizer.

“With the latest release of aspenONE engineering software, our customers can address industry-specific challenges – complying with emissions regulations faster, accelerating time-to-value, and improving capital and energy efficiency,” added Manolis Kotzabasakis, Aspentech’s executive vice president.

Pegasus’ Opera 3 software release will enhance CRM
Newly-released, the latest version of Pegasus Software’s flagship Opera ERP suite includes a large number of new applications and enhancements to evolve and strengthen its functionality for customers.

With over 60 new enhancements, Opera 3’s CRM has been boosted to provide users with a new summary scheduler, designed to improve call management and resource planning.

The software also incorporates a feature which enables users to consolidate planned maintenance calls for equipment items – eliminating the need to create individual calls and increase the time required of staff.

In addition to CRM improvements, Opera 3’s Supply Chain Management function has been enhanced, enabling product information to be extracted from Opera 3 Stock Control. On completion, management can run a cross-check, resolve discrepancies, make corrections and post adjustments back into Opera 3 – automatically updating stock levels.

Pegasus sales and marketing director Stuart Anderson added: “Opera 3 has been built upon the principles of flexibility and choice, and the latest version embodies these values through offering new applications, more functionality and over 60 enhancements to our CRM capabilities.”

Software released by SAP makes analytics easier
New releases of the Crystal Server 2011 software and of the SAP BusinessObjects Edge Business Intelligence (BI) v4.0 software are designed to help customers to get up and running quickly, in order to better understand all areas of their businesses and make confident, data-driven decisions as events unfold in real time.

The software is aimed at helping SMEs make the most out of their IT investments, and maximize their available resources by giving analytics tools to the people that need them most in the company.

SAP’s Crystal Server is an entrylevel BI solution for small companies and departments that will include self-serve data search and exploration in addition to the core functionality of report and dashboard viewing. The BusinessObjects Edge BI software will enable companies to address reporting, visualization and ad-hoc analysis to data integration and data quality.

With the 4.0 release of SAP BusinessObjects Edge BI, SMEs will have a quick insight into structured as well as unstructured information, such as data from social networks using new text analysis functions.

The software will assist anyone within an organization to analyze data and collaborate to make informed decisions based on facts rather than instinct – all without resorting to IT specialists within or outside the company.

“We are very excited about the release of SAP Crystal Server and SAP BusinessObjects Edge BI 4.0, thanks to enhancements around the semantic layer and the full integration across all products that will empower our customers,” said Ryan Goodman, CEO at Centigon Solutions.

PTC launches Creofor CAD market
Last month PLM vendor PTC launched the first fully functional collection of apps which will form Creo, the concept it launched last year to solve outstanding problems in the CAD market.

Creo allows companies to pick and choose specific tools for users ranging in experience from occasional through to heavy and expert. This flexibility hopes to mitigate training and adoption as well as usability issues for businesses.

Freestyle is one of the most exciting new tools within Creo’s parametric design app. Its sub-divisional programming for intuitive modelling has been welcomed as a step change for engineering design.

Developing in tandem with Creo, PTC’s Windchill 10.0 also offers impressive new cost tracking capability.

Information fed into Windchill from ERP systems will now highlight to manufacturers the moment when materials, location of manufacture or energy inputs put a part out of cost.

KMF chooses Epicor to overhaul IT systems
Manufacturing sub-contractor KMF announced in June that Epicor Software Corporation will replace all existing company systems, and improve information visibility right across the business.

Based in North Staffordshire, 40-year old KMF has grown into a £26m business with 315 full-time staff, and offers advanced sheet metal manufacturing, as well as value-added services – including an integration department to load manufactured metalwork with electromechanical hardware.

“Across our history, we have developed many discrete systems for managing the business and providing information, but have no reliable way of linking those systems together to increase the value of their output,” explained KMF’s business improvement manager Keith Nicholl.

Epicor will replace all of KMF’s systems, allowing information to seamlessly flow between business units and enabling better decision making. It could potentially allow KMF to further increase its competitive advantage nationally and internationally. Using Epicor’s solutions gives function owners much better visibility of their customer’s requirements, creates opportunities for greater efficiency in the supply chain and helps to alleviate manufacturing constraints.

Craig Stephens, director of product marketing at Epicor said: “One of the guiding principles at Epicor which is enabled through our True SOA architecture is to ensure information is available in real time, and can be pulled from across the business into dashboards and reports, to inform tactical or strategic company decisions.”

Forum urges caution ahead of ‘cookies’ law
The Forum of Private Business has warned small businesses to be cautious in response to a new EU law that means it is now technically illegal for UK websites to upload ‘cookies’ without first seeking the user’s consent.

Cookies are an integral part of internet browsing, and those companies that do not make moves to alter their websites to comply with the new law could be liable to prosecution. Many sites, such as Google’s AdSense function, use cookies. They work by installing a small piece of code on to a site user’s computer, and this code then allows the site to remember and recognise visitors.

Companies which are found to be breaking the new law, which was introduced on May 26, face a fine of up to £500,000. As a result, the Forum of Private Business – a not-for-profit, member-led small business support organisation – is urging business owners to make sure their websites comply.

The body tasked with policing the regulations – the Information Commissioners’ Office (ICO) has said that if it receives a complaint about a website using cookies without gaining consent beforehand, it will give the site’s owner up to 12 months to make alterations before prosecuting.

Chief executive at the Forum of Private Business Phil Orford said: “Previously, the rules surrounding the use of cookies meant that you were obliged to explain somewhere on your website how you used them and how visitors could stop your site from doing so, but that was it.”

Dassault Systèmes launches version 6 in 2012
Inspired by objective of improve Lifelike experience in simulation and virtualisation.

The new launch is designed to complement last year’s strategic development of hybrid technologies with the company’s traditional PLM offerings. In particular the version 6 release will broadens the value of digital assets into new solutions such as immersive retail store experiences and global production system planning.

Version 6 marks a step change for Dassault’s cloud offerings.

New interoperability and faster deployment capability will be facilitated by a partnership with Amazon Web Services.