Twitter ate my hamster

I’m blogging in the style of twitter, for those of you in withdrawal due to it’s recent availability issues. Got to stick to 140 char limit

Confused by the title of this post? It refers to a headline in ‘The Sun’ (UK ‘Newspaper’) that is so famous in the UK it’s a popular phrase

Twitter is a free service. No advertising, no fees, no hidden charges, no taxes, no problem. It is used by free loaders like me (and you?)

@Twitter was down a bit over this weekend, it has disabled some features and limited usage levels on others while it sorts out it’s problems

@TechCrunch did a one word blog post during the downtime ‘Twitter!’ got over 400 comments. Clearly people feel passionately about Twitter.

@mkrigsman blogged about twitter downtimes calling it IT mgmt failure saying ‘many people depend’ on it @dhaimes responded ‘more fool them!’

@twitter should not be burning cash building a bullet proof technical infrastructure to support millions of free loaders, it needs to make $

Bullet Proof infrastructure anyone can do, just hire the experienced people and buy a lot of hardware and software, easy, but it will cost $

The dot-com dead pool is full of wonderful scalable infrastructures, costing a lot of money which owners did not figure out how to pay for.

I used to use, Webvan which built a great infrastructure, had some great technology and spent $1 Billion. It never made a cent and went bust

If ‘many people depend’ on @twitter, would they all pay to use it? If they guaranteed 99.9999% availability how much would you pay for it?

Did you notice every paragraph is exactly the 140 characters long? One great thing about twitter is it forces people to be much less verbose

Intercompany Accounts with All Other-All Other Rules

I recently had a question about what Balancing Segment Value (BSV) to enter in the accounts for the All Other All Other rule and I have to admit it could be a little confusing. There is a technical limitation with the flexfield infrastructure we use to capture and store accounts which means we have to have some value for BSV and Intercompany Segments, even though we will substitute in the real BSV when we generate the Intercompany accounting.

Here is an example (chart of accounts is balancing-natural account-intercompany)

I define the following rule

Debit BSV Credit BSV
Debit Account Credit Account
All Other All Other 99-4000-99 99-2000-99

Then I enter a journal Continue reading

Larry is in the building

you can\'t park that here?When I looked out of my office window this morning I noticed somebody had a left a great big yacht outside 500 building. It is still there, nobody towed it and I didn’t see any parking tickets on it, so I assume Larry parked it there. I wonder if it’s his new ride to work; anyone can show up in a Porsche 911, Ferrari Testarossa or Toyota Sienna but if you really want to turn heads park your 62 foot Americas Cup yacht outside the office.

I was curious to check it out so I did my lap of the lake. If you have ever been to Oracle HQ you will have observed this phenomenon, we all like to walk around the lake after our lunch and this week there has been a bit of a crowd near the Yacht, I was one of the sad characters taking photos.

No sign of a Parking Ticket

Connections improve productivity – Quelle Surprise

Thanks to Oracle nerd for this post, referencing an article on CIO magazine. Apparantly connected employees are more productive. I thought this was a no brainer, if I know a lot of people I can get help and advice from a lot of people, equally if I know a lot of stuff people want to stay connected to me so they can pick my brains and get their job done.

The article goes into more depth and backs it’s argument up with stats, research and references, but I’m a blogger not a journalist. I think the paragraph above is obvious so I state it as my opinion and I’m done. For more detail on my ideas around what I call dev 2.0 you can read my original post, if you want to see it in action – you need to come and join my team, or maybe offer me a job (Boss – if you’re reading, this is a joke).

What does that radio button do?

I try to be clever and/or funny by putting a cryptic title for my posts, I think it’s my attempt to make Financial Software sound fun, perky and exciting (which it is of course). Probably the real result is for some people to get here from google (or Yahoo – do they still do search?) and be very disappointed, in fact they are probably hitting the back button right now. WordPress can show me what searches people did that got them to my page and without going into the details let me tell you that my posts about the Intercompany Periods feature (why do I need another Period?) and my musings about clearing my desk to move office (Cleaning out my Closet?) have probably been read by many confused young people and I apologize to them if they are now here reading this too. Right now those of you who know this is a blog about Oracle Financials are probably wondering when they can stop skimming the preamble and I might get to something of use or interest, so without further ado…

I was working with some AGIS users creating an Intercompany transaction from the entry screen when somebody asked “What does that radio button do?” I realized nobody in the room fully understood the feature. Continue reading

Financial Services Accounting Hub (FSAH)

Financial Services Accounting Hub or FSAH (pronounced F-saa apparently) is a great product and is not only for Financial Services companies either, I understand we’ll sell it to anyone.

From a (very) high level perspective it allows you to use Oracle SLA and GL to perform the accounting for third party applications. Companies the Financial services industry tend to build a lot of highly complex applications (e.g. loan systems, trading systems) in house, but they want the final accounting of transactions form these disparate system to end up in the same place and it will be nice if they can re-use the same accounting rules too. Continue reading

Tax Avoidance, Planning, Mitigation and Evasion

What is the difference between Tax Avoidance, Planning, Mitigation and Evasion? The first three of these are legal and the last one isn’t. With the recent conviction of Wesley Snipes, tax has been in the news quite a lot and over in the UK there has been some interesting stuff written about the country’s largest retailer, Tesco and it’s tax situation. The guardian newspaper responded today to a writ issued by Tesco, over an article in the guardian back in February.  The article talks about how Tesco has been moving assets to different companies in a variety of jurisdictions.

Global corporations have complex legal structures and whenever any assest or liability moves to a different Legal Entity, that is Intercompany and there may be tax involved. The complex and ever changing laws in this area mean it is increasingly important that you have tight control on your intercompany and it is documented because auditors and tax authorities may need to take a close look.