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How it all began…

Many years ago (about 10 in number) before there was SCN and BPX and SDN even, this ABAPer wanted to find community where there would be SAP networking, and education,  and  real live users influencing development and sharing real customer experiences and implementation knowledge.

Living very close to “the big Apple” it wasn’t hard at all to sneak off to New York City on the odd day that there wasn’t an ABAP class I was teaching and there happened to be a local chapter meeting of ASUG (the Americas SAP User’s group) in NYC. (very rare occurrence, but occasionally the stars aligned with a teach-free day).

At about the same time, I discovered that SAP held an educational event for “techies” called SAP TechEd and I was determined to find a way to attend it, even though few instructor colleagues were privileged to be invited at the time.  Being one of the folks teaching form printing with SmartForms, I hitched my star to the developers who were introducing that particular tool one year and got my first taste of SAP TechEd.  I was hopelessly hooked.

And then there was SDN

It might be heresy to confess, but ASUG and SAP TechEd figured prominently in my SDN dreams.   Here was a way to “legitimize” my love affair.  No more need to “sneak around”.  As an instructor ASUG had invited me a few times to give educational sessions on ABAP reporting and form printing, but as a member of the SAP Community Network the biggest delight came with an invitation from Bhanu Gupta to speak about BPX at her regional Chicago chapter meeting  which was followed by the honor of speaking with all the volunteer leaders of ASUG (think Bhanu times X200) during the ASUG yearly leadership conference this last June.  The topics: Community Evangelism, Web 2.0, and BPX.  Heaven. A sanctioned meeting with a room full of passionate SAP volunteers.

And then there is the antidote destination of SAP TechEd (for those Tech Ed addicted) and for some of our lucky team, TechEd plus Community Day and for the first time ever SAP TechED + Community Day + ASUG.  SAP TechEd intravenously delivered by representatives of both the SCN and ASUG communities.

 And now there is ASUG at Community Day

Yep, ASUG members are figuring prominently in the line-up for Community Day content.  Some of them you all know well (Thomas Jung, Bhanu Gupta), some of them you really should know and can get to know at Community Day.

Meet Jim Spath of Black&Decker who is a Basis wiz and will be giving a Unicode expert session and sharing leading practices from years of customer experience.

Or meet SAP Community Day and ASUG – Bringing Communities Together of Valero the data archiving wizess and ASUG Data Archiving Program Chair or Susan Keohan who my colleagues have dubbed the workflow goddess of MIT.

And there will be a session by Christopher Hanshew of Roche on Customizing ESS/MSS on ERP 6.0 . Heard a rumor that not only is he a great presenter but someone with a good sense of humor as well.

So what are you waiting for?  Community Day is a concentrated trip.  Some folks think that it is the destination.  Me?  I’m looking to meet up with folks I value and admire or just looking forward to getting to know…and Community Day is the legitimate excuse and the ultimate opportunity.

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