Sunday, 17 September 2017

OOW Planning

I think this is something like my 14th consecutive Oracle Open World coming up and yes, it will be busy but also very different.

Change is good, but there is a lot of change this year and I'm a little nervous and yet also excited.

The ACE program has changed over the last 12 months, but they are still sponsoring those speaking at OOW. Thank you OTN or should I say Developer Community for your continued support.

I fly out to HQ on the Tuesday and even the hotel has changed it name! The Sofitel has been renamed the Pullman. Same chain just a reclassification.

Wednesday is the User Experience Strategy Day, one I always look forward to, learning what they are up to next.

The ACE program has had 2 days of briefings, traditionally the Thursday and Friday but this year it is split into the Dev Champions on Thursday and ACE on Friday. That means I have Thursday free but lots of people to catch up with in development for my day job.

We all move into the city Friday night and the main event kicks off.

I haven't got plans for Saturday yet, I love to cycle the bridge but not sure if i will this year, but there is still time.

Saturday evening there is the Partner Network (OPN) first reception and there is a new partner program this year that rewards implementations rather than sales, which is much more what we do at Certus, so an important program for us.

Sunday is traditionally User Group Day, (after a quick run over the bridge) and we are still there although Oracle have brought in competition in the form of journey to cloud sessions.The EOUC, or EMEA usergroups have a great program  and this includes my traditional short talks from the EMEA ACEs and the new EMEA Dev Champions.

Then I have to run over to the OPN keynote, some partner hospitality and then off to the ACE Dinner.

Monday kicks off with the bay swim. The OAUX Exchange is the highlight for UX at OOW and a User Group Lunch and then the Oracle Womens' Leadership event which I am very privileged to be invited to. This VIP event is very thought provoking. I also hope to make it across to Oak table World but that may need to be Tuesday.

Monday evening is either the world's biggest pub crawl or simply the night when everybody has a reception. I have many invites and will make a decision closer to the time. I tend to accept most invites to receptions and not worry if I don't attend, unless it specifically said limited numbers. For a dinner I am more careful and will let the hosts know if things change. That is only good manners.

Tuesday is a quieter but still very busy day. It kicks off very early with an Analyst dinner then a number of meetings. At the moment I have nothing planned for the evening but know that will change!

Wednesday I have a UX Lunch and a usergroup focus group on how partners work for customers and then the Certus Presentation with DHL. Delivering People Excellence for DHL Moscone South 206 at 17:30 the last session of the day, just before the appreciation party. Normally Thursday morning would be the hardest session at OOW but this year there are mainly learning sessions Thursday, no case studies so I think this is the worst session time! Please come along and support us, it is a great story. I am so proud that every year we have a customer come with us to share their implementation project.

Quick visit to the bloggers meetup, and it's off to the party.

Thursday I hope to catch up with a few meetings and then its time to wind down. I would have planned to fly home Thursday if I had known it was to be such a quiet conference day, another change to the traditional but hopefully all these changes will make it even more exciting.

Oh, and I have selected a few sessions in the catalogue, well actually more than just a few but whether I have time to actually attend any is another thing. I do have a tip here though. The session catalogue will populate your diary with those you registered for, but it won't let you schedule overlaps. It does however let you mark others as favourites. When you have done that print out the session numbers and use this clever little apex app from Connor McDonald and using those numbers populate your calendar with your backup sessions. Then if the session is cancelled or not what you expected your next choice is to hand. But if you are foreign like me, set your PC / Mac to PST time first.

Lots of friends to catch up with, customers to host, meetings to attend. Sessions to deliver and if I'm lucky to attend. Just writing this blog has me exhausted but I know it will be fun.

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Tradition and Innovation: EOUC Short Talks at OOW17

Three years ago Ralf Koelling from the DOAG suggested that the EOUC use one or two of their small allocation of usergroup sessions at OOW17 to showcase more of the wonderful talent we have in EMEA.

At the time people were talking about the upcoming 12c Database and since lots of DBAs were at OOW anyway with the ACE Director Program we reached out and said would they like to do a short talk and yes they did. I said at the time where else would you get so many experts in one session? 12 on 12c spoke that year.

It was such fun, the time counts down with a clock projected onto the wall, and it is obvious how much effort speakers have made to get their point across in such a short time.

2015 and we did it again, this time with no break between the sessions we moved up to 16 speakers. More than 12 on 12c. 

Then last year it was fully a tradition and we asked the speakers to pick their favourite feature of the database and they didn't disappoint, 22 stepped up to the plate.

Since last year Oracle, the ACE program and OOW has moved some of its priorities and as well as the very visible priority of Cloud, Code is also been given a lot more exposure. 

OTN who manage the ACE Program have recently launched another program of Dev Champions, so this year we are splitting the EOUC talks into ACE and Dev.

The ACE Quick Fire Talks has 8 speakers with 5 minutes each.

EOUC Database ACES Share Their Favorite Database Things
Sunday, Oct 01, 10:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. | Marriott Marquis (Golden Gate Level) - Golden Gate C1/C2

Frank Pachot dbms_xplan.display_cursor
Robin Moffatt Apache Kafka
Heli Helskyaho Data Guide
Christian Antognini Partial Indexes
Julian Dontcheff Oracle RAC on Third-Party Clouds
Oren Nakdimon Collections in SQL
M.Fevzi Korkutata WebLogic Multitenancy
Mahir M. Quluzade Data Guard 12.2

Then we will have the Dev Champion speakers who have 6 minutes each to tell us what it is they do:

EOUC Developer Champions Show the Cool Tech They Use

Sunday, Oct 01, 11:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. | Marriott Marquis (Golden Gate Level) - Golden Gate C1/C2

Johan VosJava from Mobile to Cloud
Tim Hall Oracle REST Data Services (ORDS)
Lonneke Dikmans JavaScript, machine learning, blockchain, Java, iOT, devops
Frank Munz From a custom built Raspberry Pi based Docker Swarm cluster to Oracle Container Cloud Service (OCCS)
Lucas Jellema Learning More Everyday 
Bjoern Rost Poor-man's CDC for kafka streaming

Make sure you sign up to these sessions in your schedule, it will be such good fun.

Friday, 1 September 2017

Blockchain - this year's big thing in Apps?

My last post 'Mind the Gap' talked about that marketing to adoption process. And this year I think for me it will be Blockchain.

Remember when every presentation on Cloud, or Big Data or Digital started with a definition? Well expect that, and in the run up to OOW I have been reading lots of articles so I at least arrive semi educated.

Wikipedia says 'A blockchain facilitates secure online transactions.A blockchain is a decentralized and distributed digital ledger that is used to record transactions across many computers so that the record cannot be altered retroactively without the alteration of all subsequent blocks and the collusion of the network'

It is all conjecture at the moment what oracle are going to do, but the signs are there and I know people in development who have been 'busy on new initiatives' and now the schedule is published it is pretty clear something is coming. TechTarget commented on this last week.

In fact there are 20 sessions in the season catalogue if you search for Blockchain, so it is obviously important and the launch of Oracle Blockchain Cloud Service, OBCS will be an important new innovation for enterprise.

Mind The Gap - Marketing to Adoption - It's Fun

I'm getting ready for Oracle Open World, what do I need to do? What do I need to Learn? Where do I need to be? Who do I need to see?

Every day, every hour my mailbox has another invite or marketing email, and the diary is getting busier and busier. 

I love OOW, it is about Oracle showing their roadmap, and marketing their current portfolio. As a partner I want to be part of that current portfolio message, and am pleased that this year I will be part of the DHL story; but just as important is understanding the roadmap.

My role as Alliance Director means I need to understand all new initiatives in Oracle and determine if they will have a use in what we do at Certus. Then I need to keep an eye on them from the first marketing, until the time they are adopted by customers and make sure we partner, learn and invest at the right time. The problem is, we never know how long that gap will be.

As a user group leader it is even more difficult, we can't deliver content in everything Oracle are talking about but we do need to keep people informed, and then understand the adoption pattern as it emerges.

Think about existing, mature products, like the database or E Business Suite. Development talk about the innovation they will bring to the next release for about a year before the release notes start to appear, and then after release, we see early adopters and many theoretical sessions before adoption starts to become mainstream. It can take several years between release and half the customer base adopting.

For my world, the SaaS, the Fusion applications took almost 7 years from Idea to Release, and several years before there was more than just a handful of users, but roll forward 5 years and we have many, many customers and a significant number who have renewed their 3 year subscriptions. The Gap from marketing to adoption was wide, but it has been a great journey and I personally have loved it. AM loving it, the favourite part of my job is talking to customers, understanding where they are now and then helping them create their strategy to move to where they need to be. Then I love to share that collective insight with user group members.

A more recent example of this is #PaaS4SaaS. I have been talking about this since Oracle first started their journey about 4 years ago. At Certus we stated early on how important this would be for SaaS customers. We got educated, we selected our partner eProseed, we worked with development and UX and OPN. Adoption has been slow, for new products, rather than just the next release of technology, part of this 'gap' is recognising use cases., but they are here now and we have several projects in progress. I am particularly enjoying the Low Code part of #PaaS4SaaS.

So what will be the new messages at this OOW, and which gap will I be minding next? ...............