A NASA Software of the Year finalist has found a place on the World Wide Web. Thanks to a licensing agreement between the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and Oak Grove Systems, of Pasadena, California, an entirely new generation of software that allows users to integrate workflow processes like never before is available as Oak Grove Reactor.TM
Oak Grove Systems is the first company to operate under a new Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)/NASA technology transfer policy designed to speed up the transfer of space age technologies to the commercial sector. Oak Grove believes process integration software, such as Reactor, will join e-mail and the World Wide Web in transforming the way we learn and correspond.
The software, developed by JPL/Caltech, was originally put to use at Johnson Space Center as part of Johnson's High Volume Data Management project. It was applied to the management of mission critical operations in the Space Shuttle and International Space Station programs. The software connected multiple project teams at independent sites, despite differing levels of software sophistication, user interaction, and user interfaces. Specifically, the software allowed a 1,000-person team to interact with each other and the data as it was adjusted, reorganized, and updated day to day.
With Reactor technology in place, NASA has experienced a 40-percent reduction in process cycle time as decisions and changes are made more immediately. Since hitting the commercial market, customers who have implemented Reactor products are enjoying a dramatic increase in improved team efficiency and individual productivity.
Oak Grove Systems president Chuck Ames says that this cutting-edge technology can join e-mail, calendar/scheduling, and legacy applications into one interactive system via the web. Reactor process delegation server lets organizations with large numbers of employees who are disconnected due to geographic, technological, and systems barriers improve their efficiency and workflow.
Most similar products focus on either product data management (PDM) or vertical workflow management systems. PDMs focus on controlling access and eliminating mistakes as projects are passed around to several people, while workflow management tools aim to notify persons when pieces of a project are completed or have deadlines approaching.
The typical program combines a little of both systems into one application, but requires organizations to tailor their own system to the workflow system, and train employees on how to use the new program. Oak Grove Reactor provides improved workflow management with tools typically available to most users. Reactor is employee-friendly because it works with existing software and few new skills are needed to use it proficiently.
Reactor uses a web browser, such as Microsoft Internet Explorer® or Netscape Navigator,® as its interface. A user can edit, reassign tasks, modify text, change preconditions, and add or remove steps to a procedure. Other users may work on the same procedure or view its status while it is being worked on at a different site.
Oak Grove Systems is partnering with other companies to power their software with Reactor-enabled processes. Ames believes Reactor can revolutionize the way businesses communicate internally, and how projects are completed. The prospect of working with colleagues located in New York and France, as though they were just down the hall from each other, has Oak Grove believing they can change the way the world works together.
Oak Grove ReactorTM is a trademark of Oak Grove