As this is my first weblog, a short introduction might be appropriate, as I’m not a typical ABAP developer at all. I’m a 26-year old student of Internet Technologies and –management at the FH JOANNEUM (University of Applied Sciences) at Kapfenberg, Austria, currently doing my internship there developing a timetable and resource administration application based on WebAS 6.20 (which will be used in examples in future weblogs).
Being “just” a kind of experienced web developer next to doing my studies there was no ABAP knowledge or SAP experience I could rely on when I started into this project half a year ago. Our in-company SAP team is very small (2-3 people), so I found myself being responsible for the whole WebAS topic on my own – but I wanted that challenge, so instead of complaining it was time to get hold of some information.
The Beginning …
Only having some minor insight into SAP from a user’s perspective to enhance my study-related theoretical knowledge about ERP in general was a shallow basis to start from – and the expectations were high. After reading through two general WebAS books and some basic tutorials I started looking for some online information, and this is how I found SDN.
Over the past 4 months SDN has been my resource #1 for everything I needed to know, be it Support Package questions, BSP extension problems, WebAS general stuff – you name it. I dare not think how much longer it would have taken me to get to where I am now if it wasn’t for this priceless community I was able to become part of.
In the beginning I was overwhelmed by the amount of technical details that were covered and discussed here, wondering if I would ever be able to really know what was going on here. Boy, I had a lot of questions, but asking them in this forum of tech gurus … didn’t want to make a fool of myself that easy 🙂
… becoming an “Infoholic” …
So I started to act like a “black hole”, absorbing every piece of information I could gather. For what seemed like an eternity (because there was almost no progress in development at that time) I back-read all BSP and WebAS weblogs, countless forum threads. Luckily I had the freedom to do so, as my “boss” had full confidence in me (besides the fact that there was no one else dealing with WebAS).
Finally, there came the time when I somewhat caught up with the tech talk, and after playing with several tutorials I jumped into the cold water of asking questions on SDN. Of course there were times I should have known better than posting my thoughts hastily, but I learned that all the time I invested in gaining knowledge from blogs, documentation and other resources was more than worth it.
If there is one piece of advice that I can give: Take your time to learn the basics (and more) on what you want to learn, even if it takes 2 weeks or more – especially if you are new to SDN or developing with some new technology. It sure paid off for me.
Not only did I install WebAS 6.20 a few times (the running development system is one of them), also importing support packages and installing kernel patches is almost daily routine now. On the application-side I’m quite comfortable with MVC now, using various extensions and also adapting a standard design theme to our own layout.
… and starting to re-pay my debts
Now, after being able to give back some help to SDN (Is that really me on 3rd place in BSP forum rankings? …) I decided to get into blogging as well, as there are some topics I found that I could provide others with useful information. Let’s see if I can keep up my newly-made schedule and post one blog a week in November.
And looking further into the future – if I am to stay in touch with SAP after my studies (chances are somewhat good at the moment) I’m really looking forward to maybe coming to TechEd’05, as it is being held in Vienna (at least I read that), and getting to know whoever of you will be there!
For now – thanks SDN! (Brian, Craig, Thomas & Co.)