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HP and Sun Microsystems should take note. Oracle has announced its "architecture of the future," and HP and Sun have been left off the plans.

Oracle today kicked off its OpenWorld customer conference in San Francisco with the company's President Charles Phillips giving the grandest of endorsements to Dell, Red Hat, Novell and Intel. These vendors, along with Oracle, will next year send executives around the globe to enlighten customers on what they see as the architecture or data center of the future, Phillips announced during a keynote. This architecture will obviously be centered around clusters of Linux servers tuned to run Oracle's "grid-enabled" database software instead of relying on the traditional, large Unix servers used by many Oracle customers. Oracle's decision to relegate HP and Sun to its "architecture of the past" must be seen as a major slight to the companies who joined Dell, EMC and Intel as the "diamond sponsors" of Oracle's conference.

Almost comically, Phillips announced Oracle's architecture of the future just moments before he introduced HP's CEO Carly Fiorina as the first major keynote of OpenWorld. During her speech, Fiorina touted the performance of Oracle's database and cluster software running on HP's high-end Superdome servers with HP-UX. In case you're not keeping track, that's the architecture of the past.

Admittedly, there isn't much meat to Oracle's architecture of the future plan. It's no secret that Oracle has been pushing Linux and specifically Linux clusters from Dell for a long time. In addition, all Oracle and its "partners of the future" plan to do is travel next year to 14 cities and hold seminars telling customers how wonderful their technology is. HP and Sun can surely afford to miss such gatherings.

HP, however, must be feeling a bit burned by Phillips touting its arch-rival Dell just ahead of Fiorina's speech. Phillips did not even mention a deal between HP and Oracle announced on the day. The two companies plan to offer a bundle of Oracle's E-Business Suite Special Edition running on HP's ProLiant servers to resellers in North America. This program is meant to strengthen the companies' attack on small- and medium-sized businesses. Fiorina was left to talk up the shared effort on her own.

While this architecture of the future gig isn't that big of a deal, HP and Sun have surely taken note of Oracle's Dell-loving agenda - not that there's much they can do about it. An Oracle spokeswoman describing the week's keynotes from Fiorina, Sun's Scott McNealy, EMC's Joe Tucci and Dell's Michael Dell went so far as to call Michael Dell her "personal favorite" in front of 25,000 customers and partners. Thanks for showing up, Carly.

In a post-keynote question and answer session, Phillips indicated that Fiorina had noticed the snub.

"There's nothing against Sun and HP not being involved," he said, according to IDG News Service's Stacy Cowley. "Carly let me know she was interested when she walked offstage."

We bet she did.

Also on the day, Oracle made a significant product announcement.

It revealed its plans to make a major move in the business intelligence software market by announcing a product aptly named Oracle Business Intelligence 10g. This standalone software package is set to arrive in the first quarter.

It includes some of the business analytics tools found in Oracle's Application Server product and then adds a couple more. The previous tools will still be included with the Enterprise Edition of the Application Server, but customers running lower-end versions of the Application Server software will now be able to pick up the business intelligence goodies separately. The four main components of Business Intelligence 10g are Oracle's Discoverer, Spreadsheet Add-In, Warehouse Builder and BI Beans tools. ®

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