Good set of starter videos for WebSphere Commerce 7, Feature Pack 3

The InfoCenter is the best place to find information on the WebSphere Commerce product. It is one of the best info centers IBM has, in my opinion. You can see a lot of the latest function in full video format on this site. Check out the Feature Pack 3 videos today.

Books on Amazon:

Workspaces just got better in WebSphere Commerce FP3

Feature pack 3 for WebSphere Commerce 7 put in what I consider a great feature into the Management Center.

Workspaces in Management Center allow for approval work flow of content for the marketing team. This means different people can be assigned tasks and then upon approval the manager of the team can have the content automatically published or scheduled to be published.

One key missing piece in the prior release was a way for the approval manager to see exactly what changes have been made in a particular task. Well, ask no more. In Feature Pack 3 there is now a History tab where you can see all of the changes (transactions) that would be published.

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Netezza rocks out at AARP, replaces Oracle

Just read a great article where AARP replaced an Oracle implementation with IBM Netezza.

AARP had been using Oracle Database for their data warehouse. But their system simply could not keep up with the demand. As Margherita Bruni from AARP says, “our analysts would run a report, then go for coffee or for lunch, and, maybe if they were lucky, by 5:00 p.m. they would get the response—it was unacceptable—the system was so busy writing the new daily data that it didn’t give any importance to the read operations performed by users.” The stresses on their system were so great that in 2009 alone, their Oracle Database environment had more than 30 system failures. To compound matters, these system performance issues meant that full backups were not possible. Instead AARP would back up only a few critical tables, which is a less than desirable disaster recovery scenario. Clearly, something had to be done.

Global Smarter Commerce Summit day one

Great opening general session, very entertaining. Mark Jefferies and Craig Hayman did a great job. I tweeted throughout the entire session, lots of good discussion in the twitterverse.

The first day was filled with some great customer sessions explaining how they moved to WebSphere Commerce and have taken advantage of things like the starter stores, espots, and precision marketing. Its always good to hear how our software is actually being used.

Two customer testimonies I really enjoyed were Pitney-Bowes and Medco Healthcare. They really use the software to its full extent.

The day ended with an amazing party at Embarcadero park. The hit of the night was the Tequilla shot bar…yeah, deadly.

Deja Mi, the IBM Smarter Commerce Summit and live blogging

Next week is the IBM Smarter Commerce Summit and it is looking to be a very good conference indeed. With over 2000 attendees for its first year it is looking more and more like an IMPACT or Lotusphere. The summit is being held in San Diego and I will be arriving on Monday. The real attraction for me is this summit will have its usual introductory sessions for the IBM Smarter Commerce Vision but the focus is on customer presentations, lessons learned and best practices. With my agenda now filled out I am excited to hear what the customer has to say about our software and solutions.

This conference has done “everything right” so far. They have a very easy to use portal for setting up sessions, chatting, twittering and synchronizing with your calendar – very cool.

The Twitter id being used by participants will be “#ibmsgcs“. I will live blogging during each of my sessions so stay tuned. You can also follow @IBMSmrtCommerce to get the daily tweets.

Lastly, the entire conference will be using Deja Mi. A pretty nice social networking tool that will capture images, tweets and discussions throughout the conference.

Free “Mastering XPages” book!

I am offering my copy of “Mastering XPages” by the amazing team of Martin Donnelly, Mark Wallace, and Tony McGuckin to the first responder of this point. Please email me at bob [at] balfes.net. The only catch is you pay for shipping and handling.