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ASUG08 – Day Minus Three (and counting)

-3 | -2 | -1 | 0 | +1 | +2 | +3 


In prior blogs about the America’s SAP Users Group Annual Conference and Vendor Fair (now also known as ASUG08, or in twitter hash tags: #asug08), from the call for presentations in November 2007, to the conference planning session in January 2008, to some early predictions of great content in March and April. Over the past couple weeks I’ve highlighted 3 important influence councils – Environment Safety & Health, Process Controls, and finally, looking again at Incident Management.

People to See

Saturday I’m meeting up with two friends from way back in ASUG, either 1998 or 1998 respectively, I believe.  Joel Albert from Chevron mentored me in many ways, influencing SAP, managing projects, working the system, and being a challenging, fair yet tough role model.  It will be great to see him again, not to mention along with Juergen Kirschner of Oracle Germany, whose Socratic teaching methods have left every DBA I’ve ever known, myself included, humbled yet hungry for more knowledge.  The three of us are headed for a geek/tech/scientist/tourist trip over to Cape Canaveral.

Sunday, I’m hanging out with more long time friends, and hoping to meet new ones, starting at the ASUG Business Integration Technology and Infrastructure Community (AKA the BITI group) informal headquarters.  I’ve used web 2.0 technology to map some of our plans on, but it’s a dynamic group, so expect slight deviations from any predictions.  Later Sunday I have a pile of conflicts, but expect to see us at the welcome reception and then at social events up to curfew.

Monday through Wednesday is the main conference; here’s just a short a list of people I’ve met at prior events and am eager to catch up with:

Brad Dillingham
Mark Finnern
Franz-Josef Fritz
Dave Hubert
Tom Jung
Juergen Kirschner
Paul Loos
Butch McNally
Peter McNulty
Bill Pfelging
Marilyn Pratt
John Walls
Minda Zetlin

  Sadly, neither Sue Keohan nor Bhanu Gupta will make it to the conference this year – hope to see them at the ASUG volunteer meeting in June! 

  Next, like I did for TechEd 07, here’s a another short list of folks I’ve met online that I will meet face-to-face for the first time:

Eric Domski
James Farrar
Jan Fetzer
Louenas Hamdi
Richard Hirsch
Dennis Howlett
Harald Reiter
Kristin Thome
Michael Wiedemann

  Hmm, need to add one more to make a top ten list…


  David Halitsky 

Places To Go

  Obvious places to catch up with me will be the Mobile Technology sessions I am moderating, although I may not stay for the each entire session (see the Where Is Jim tab on the editgrid sheet listed above).  I usually take the vendor floor diagram, and mark it up like a treasure map for vendors I want to meet for future projects, and ones I want to thank for past project successes.  The majority of time, I find myself drifting back to the Oracle booth, given my years of DBA experience and the need to keep up on future road maps.  But I will also catch up with Juergen Thomas of Microsoft, a key architect in the SAP on SQL Server space.

  Outside the convention center floor there are numerous networking opportunities.  While Tom Brokaw is speaking Monday night, there are competing vendor events as well as ASUG volunteer meetings.  I’m glad I’m speaking Monday so that I won’t need to be rehearsing and worrying about that Monday night!

  Hang out at the ASUG booth. 

  An SAP Mentor meetup is supposed to happen Wednesday, but I’m already double booked so that might be a problem. 

   I”d recommend anyone who has time to sign up for the SAP Usability Lab.  In past conferences, I have only managed to squeeze this in a couple times, but it’s a fascinating glimpse into software futures.

Things To Do

  Well, beyond the obvious, going to education sessions, there’s blogging, twittering (as jspath55) and event tracking – using “@asug08” or “@sapphire08” but not both (right Craig – and “Welcome Back to Work”)

  Increasing my network. At TechEd07 I went from nil to almost 100 contacts.  I’m hoping to go from around 200 now to around 300 by this time next week – look me up, after we’ve met online or in person.

  And I have one more BITI newsletter to edit to meet my goal of one per month.  Help me out, give me a success story from the ASUG networking, influencing and educating in Orlando. 

  And Going to Sapphire / ASUG 08 in Orlando?  Want a cool reusable water bottle?! As they say in the Boy Scouts – a hydrated scout is a happy scout, a dehydrated scout is a dead scout, and dead scouts have no fun.

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  • meeting you as well – even though I think we already met briefly last year at TechEd.
    This time though we make it official with a couple of beers;-)
  • we’ll finally get a chance to meet personally, since I missed you at previous events.

    Hopefully see you next week,
    Rich Heilman

  • Here’s a success story for you, Jim:
    I met you, you introduced me to Peter McNulty, who offered to set up webcasts for us on Business Objects, and voila, we have a webcast scheduled for Wednesday, June 4th!  Thank you so much, Jim!