This week I will complete approx.1 year working experience in PI7.1. From since long back I was working with XI2.0, 3.0 and am had saw the revolutionary changes throughout the year.
Long back....not couple of years, precisely a year back... 18th September 2008, 1st time I had started my Journey on PI 7.1 system. In SAP TechED 2007, Bangalore, 1st Time I had experienced the flavors of PI7.1 and was impressed with the new features comparing with XI2.0/3.0. PI 7.1 was on peak during this time (of course it’s still on pinnacle..:-)).
My friend Nathan had created my login ID on newly installed PI system. As someone had said, “Life is too short, so eat the dessert first.” All I had was to simply obey it and after that, for next few of months, I was underground. Engaged myself in exploring the key aspects of PI7.1.
During this period, I had smelled various flavors of the SAP’s so called ESB (PI 7.1). The list of starts from introducing the NWA instead of Visual Admin and then XML validations, New Lookup facility in Mapping, Service Registry, PCM (Process Component models), GDTs (Global Data Types), Using Folders in PI 7.1, AAE(Advanced adapter engine), Decision Steps in BPM and so on….. long lasting list.
I hate to brag, but there's one talent that I have that made me to explore the PI7.1 features very quickly. I can grab a new piece of PI features in the morning, implement it during a coffee break, and know how to use the basic features by lunch. A few tacos and hours later, I can have several of the advanced features down pat.
Shhhh ... here's a secret. Now I'm going to tell you one of the ways I learn XI/PI so quickly. I use one best feature from the menu bar….i.e. Help (SAP help i.e. self help).
Use of SAP Library made most of things easy. Now there is couple of good blogs/articles available on SDN that talks about PI7.1 features and also extended those till upgrade with EHP1. But I am sure the indications in SAP Help might be the birth place for it. Well I believe this is the global truth …:-). But I thought, it’s better to light a candle than to curse the darkness by ignoring the SAP help documents.
Ooops, I'm definitely losing my train of thought here. I should not only stuck up with SAP help, but also continue with the various experimentations with PI 7.1, that helped me to get the correct feel of granularity and depth of PI 7.1. The various experimentations in PI/XI are important to gain the control over it.
I started doing various POCs (Proof of Concepts) to investigate the acceptance of these features in current Business Process. These POCs helped me to give better solutions/proposals for the existing Business processes, particularly usage of RFC/DB lookups in SAP GRC NFE 1.0 - New Solution Introduction & Implemention Best Practices Implementation work, usage of single service for multiple operations, UDDI and Service Registry (currently working on this). Also the integration POC of with PI various mainframe systems, oracle/db2 was a good experience.
PI 7.1 was considered as ESB but I am still not convenience with it. I had experienced couple of limitations comparing with other mature tools such as WBI, Message Broker and Mercator etc particularly in case of Error handling. That gives me another direction to do more research work and ASAP will come up with detail analysis.
Objectively, I have to admit that the learning path I’m using is not undervalued, but may have scope to widen the horizons to have broad perception towards PI.