HOUSTON - September 21, 2010 - The Information Store (iStore) is joining in an industry-wide initiative to define and promote information technology best practices in the oil & gas industry.
By endorsing the Microsoft Upstream Reference Architecture ,iStore is demonstrating its long-standing commitment to standards that contribute to the success of its petroleum data access and visualization products.
Given the high cost of petroleum exploration and production, oil and gas companies are driven to seek new information technologies that boost business efficiency, improve safety or provide a competitive edge. Microsoft's recently-launched reference architecture initiative specifically addresses the sector's need to create business-focused systems with greater interoperability and reduced complexity and cost. The initiative supports software providers such as iStore with a set of principles to facilitate building digital oilfield solutions that combine and present data from multiple vendors and systems.
"Oil and gas operators benefit when standard architectures are implemented because interoperability increases and adoption hurdles are lowered. As a result, they will be able to better execute their E&P information sharing and business process integration strategies," said Ali Ferling, managing director, Worldwide Oil & Gas Industry, Microsoft. "The contribution that iStore provides the Microsoft Upstream Reference Architecture Initiative will help us reach this goal, especially as new technologies such as cloud computing and a service-oriented architecture approach become mainstream in oil and gas."
iStore has long recognized the importance of standards in the petroleum industry. The founders of iStore were instrumental in the industry's early attempts to create data standards through the Petrotechnical Open Software Corporation (POSC). Today, standards, such as the Professional Petroleum Data Management (PPDM) data model, are gaining traction in the marketplace. To date, iStore's PetroTrek data management software is the only PPDM-certified product utilizing the entire PPDM data model.
Barry Irani, iStore's president and CEO, stated "iStore applauds Microsoft for taking a principled rather than a prescriptive approach in addressing the petroleum industry's IT challenges. With this initiative, Microsoft has clearly demonstrated its commitment to our industry. Our company has long advocated business-driven data standards, such as PPDM, as being fundamental to solving the problems of making multiple systems work together. We remain committed to fully leveraging the value of petroleum data standards in our PetroTrek E&P decision-support and data management software, and appreciate Microsoft's alignment with this approach through its Upstream Reference Architecture initiative."
iStore plans to continue working closely with Microsoft on standards-based software. In addition to championing standards, the initiative identifies key enabling components for the digital oilfield of the future, including cloud computing. As an early adopter of Microsoft's Windows Azure cloud platform for delivering software and data over the Internet, iStore is especially well positioned to assist the industry in understanding how public and private clouds can address real E&P operations, such as sharing data with joint venture partners.
The Microsoft Upstream Reference Architecture initiative also emphasizes the user experience as a key to deriving business value from IT. For software vendors like iStore this translates into interactive applications that put E&P data into meaningful contexts for business users. iStore has pioneered data integration and rich visualization in the industry. For example, the company's Time Chart, an interactive Web Part for Microsoft SharePoint, combines production, operations and safety data in an intuitive, user-friendly form. iStore plans to continue improving the user experience through new mediums and technologies, such as Microsoft Silverlight.
Barry Irani concluded iStore's announcement by remarking "We anticipate that participation in this initiative will benefit the marketplace, and we welcome this opportunity to join with other leading solution providers in this important initiative sponsored by Microsoft."
For more information about the Microsoft Upstream Reference Architecture, visit http://www.microsoft.com/industry/manufacturing/oilandgas/solutions/mura.mspx.