Dr. Sumit Chowdhury, CIO of Reliance Communications, was another keynote presenter and CEP user at TUCON this year. Reliance is one of the biggest telco operators in the world operating mostly in Asia.
Sumit viewed the evolution of organisations as being matched by their core IT approaches: moving from simple to complex in organisation (and this mostly diven by size) being relected in their IT evolution from historic -to- responsive -to- predictive -to- analytic. To explain this, Sumit compared business organisations with organisms, with stimuli resulting in reflex operations or, for more difficult stimuli, to the brain. The IT equivalent is that typically transactions are treated by preprogrammed, reflexive, business systems… but where analytics lead to more intelligence leading to more evolved “reflex actions”…
Reliance handle 330k channel payments per day and deal with 1M calls per day, collecting events such as “phone recharge orders”. As these transactions occur too fast to rely on getting the full history (ie context) for customers in an on-line database transaction, they prime their CEP system with historic customer infomation, allowing them to enable policies like “for every 4th phone recharge by a customer, reward with a free 30mins calltime”. Effectively the state of the customer is managed in TIBCO BusinessEvents state machines, and they exploit declarative rules which are easier to change via a dashboard.
Sumit ended with some key requirements for successful business solutions:
- business control (e.g. ready adjustment of business rules, policies and decisions)
- scalability for business growth (e.g. ability to re-architect for multiples improvement in throughput)
- context-aware (e.g. access to any necessary metadata and history for decision making)
- real time (e.g. making decisions in the timescale required by the customer – “customer time”)
This was an excellent keynote – covering aspects of business philosophy as well as technology trends. Reliance have been using TIBCO BusinessEvents for eXtreme Transaction Processing type applications for a while and have been instrumental in some of the scalability enhancements in past releases.