Interview: Surend Dayal, Oracle

Interview: Surend Dayal, Oracle

Which technologies or innovations do you think will be game changers or reach maturity in 2019?

Blockchain is something that has been talked about throughout 2018, but in 2019 I expect to see it becoming a reality for many people. Blockchain is offering an alternative for trust in an ecosystem. Trust will be augmented or, in some instances, replaced by blockchain. This will enable new partnerships to form and ideas to emerge far more quickly, as blockchain will remove the need to wait for a trusted third-party or governance layer to be set up. In many Government processes and functions, this will increase trust in the system.

How are AI, IoT and cyber threats changing your industry sector, and what is your business doing to move with the changes?

As the momentum behind digital transformation builds, more and more organisations are moving their workloads to the cloud. At Oracle OpenWorld, we announced the launch of our Generation 2 Cloud. This recognises the need to treat the Cloud space as a theatre of war with multiple threat vectors globally, requiring increased security in the cloud space. In our Generation 2 Cloud, we put customer code, data and resources on a bare metal computer, while cloud control code lives on a separate computer with a different architecture. With this approach, we cannot see customer data, and there is no user access to the cloud control code. By having separate cloud control computers we create an impenetrable barrier that protects the cloud perimeter and customer zones. We also use AI to increase the speed of defences, because humans cannot compete with the AI technologies used by malicious actors.

On the IoT front, we have built IoT into our cloud so that data from the increasing network of connected devices can be managed and harnessed at industrial scale. We see this having major impact on smart cities in particular.

What will be the biggest growth opportunities for your company and your customers in 2019, and why?

In 2019, we will be focused on Oracle Autonomous Database. When we talk about this technology, what we mean is a database that is self-repairing, self-securing and self-managing. It can deliver automated patching, upgrades and tuning — including performing all routine database maintenance tasks while the system is running — without human intervention. Oracle Autonomous Database is self-securing. It automatically encrypts all data, providing security updates with no downtime, along with protection from both external attacks and malicious internal users. Lastly, by autonomous database, we mean a database that is self-repairing. The self-recovering capability automatically detects and applies corrective action to ensure nonstop access to your data.

Product features aside, the really exciting part about this is what it means for organisations. It’s easy to use; you can deploy a new database in minutes. Once it’s set up, the next things users notice is how fast it is. Adaptive machine-learning algorithms drive automatic caching, adaptive indexing, advanced compression and optimised cloud data loading — with no effort from the end-user. Users find they can expand and shrink compute and storage independently without downtime, which results in a cost saving, as they are paying only for resources consumed.

What’s on your tech wish list from industry, regulators and innovators in 2019?

In 2019, I see government being the technology platform that brings together citizens, regulators and service providers, to be able to provide services that are increasingly digital in nature and deliver citizen-centric outcomes.

Surend Dayal leads Oracle’s Public Sector business in Australia, having joined Oracle after it purchased his company RuleBurst. Surend is well-known in the Canberra community. He has significant involvement at the Australian National University, and also as an angel investor in multiple local start-ups who he has mentored through the challenges of taking their businesses global.

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