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SDN Community Day Mentor Hands-On Workshop

You might be asking yourself what exactly is the SDN Day Mentors’ Hands-On Workshop (or SDNDMHOW for short). Well to answer that question we really have to back up a few months to Sapphire in Orlando. A group of SAP Mentors were sitting around and discussing the TechEd Community Day with Mark Finnern. We wanted to do something special and new for the Community Day this year.


Our discussion quickly turned to ask the question – what is really the most valuable part of the TechEd experience overall? What is it that really sets TechEd apart from any other event throughout the year? Although there is always one jokester in the group that claims the best part of TechEd is the concert/open bar, the consensus was that the truly unique feature of TechEd is the Hands-On Workshops.  It is great to be able to hear an expert talk about a subject and maybe even see a demo, but nothing really compares to the value of being able to use the technology yourself and then ask questions that come to mind out of that usage. The only downside is that you can only reserve a maximum of 2 Hands-On sessions during TechEd. That is at most 8 hours of hands-on experience; assuming you pick two, four hour sessions.


And so the SDN Day Mentors’ Hands-On Workshop was born.  The idea was to take this best aspect of TechEd and let people have the opportunity to engage in 4 extra hours of hands-on materials!  There will be four mentors – Rich Heilman of SAP, Ed Herrmann of Colgate, Dan McWeeney of Adobe, and myself – each leading one hour of this 4 hour hands-on session.  Each section of the hands-on will be self contained and will cover one major topic.  However if you are able to stay for all 4 of the one hour sessions, by the end you will see how all the pieces begin to fit together.  In the end you get to pick the brains of 4 SDN mentors and have the software in hand while you do it.


The four of us all have pretty solid ABAP development backgrounds, so that will be the overall focus of this workshop. But we aren’t going to focus on anything old here.  In fact the majority of the content in this session will be based upon as yet unreleased new functionality for ABAP developers.  We are going to build a basic Sales Order processing transaction – but the technology we are going to explore is going to be anything but basic.


So to breakdown the 4 parts of the workshop:

Persistent and Service Objects – Rich Heilman

  • See the latest techniques for build the data access and business logic layers in ABAP        
  • Preview new ABAP development tools 

Adobe Flex Builder – Dan McWeeney

  • Install and run Adobe Flex Builder for creating Flex Components
  • Learn some tricks and tips for Flex Component Development from someone who is also an ABAP developer 

Web Dynpro Islands – Thomas Jung

  • With the new Islands functionality in Web Dynpro, you can embed Adobe Flex Components seamlessly into Web Dynpro
  • We will take one of the Flex Components that Dan detailed in the previous hour and embed it within Web Dynpro ABAP 

Floorplan Manager for Web Dynpro ABAP – Ed Herrmann

  • Learn how to use the new Floorplan Manager to create consistent user interfaces
  • Take the Web Dynpro components from the previous exercise (which contains the Flex Component from the exercise before that) and wrap them altogether with the business logic from the very first session to create one finished application 

As you can see we are going to pack a heck of lot into those four hours.  So if you want to give yourself the development edge by being one of the first people to try out new ABAP development techniques like the Floorplan Manager, Islands, and Web Dynpro Drag and Drop – then this is the session for you. And don’t worry if you have already registered for TechEd, but didn’t add on the community day.  You can always go back and add the community day into your existing registration.  If you are already signed up to attend community day, then you just need to add your name to this wiki page:


Unlike the regular TechEd sessions, we can’t provide laptops for everyone, so this will be a bring your own laptop event.  We will be bringing the servers, and the network.  You only need to worry about bringing a laptop that has the SAPGUI installed on it.  Heck, we will even have a few DVDs with the SAPGUI on it floating around the room just in case. It is really important that you sign up in advance on the WIKI so that we can size the session for the number of interested people.  We need to make sure that we have enough room, network connections, server capacity, etc.  If only 20 people sign up on the WIKI and then 100 show up the day of the event and want to attend, then there are going to be people who won’t be able to get a logon to the system.

And now before I finish this blog, I have the promised preview of the workshop exercise that we will be building. All the steps that I discussed above spread out over the 4 hours will result in the application that you see in this video.

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  • Very cool to see our SAP mentors, Thomas, Rich, Dan, and Ed jumping in to create these outstanding and valuable sessions at SAP Community Day in Las Vegas.  Our mentors will be prominent in many ways throughout TechEd this year including Community Day and in the Clubhouse as well.  We are really excited about giving SAP mentors the opportunity to shine and to bring great contributions and value to the SAP Community.  Looking forward to it and best of luck with these sessions!!


  • Hi Thomas,

    Great Job !
    I enjoyed very much the item "important things", I must implement it here !

    Absolutely everyone should go to this great event!
    If everything be ok (I hope) i'll be there !

    Good luck for you and all SAP mentors.

    Marcelo Ramos

  • That is Amazing!!!
    Great Job.
    FPM, Adobe Flex and new features like drag & drop in WDA.

    I am dying to see it working in my network.
    waiting for 7.0 ehp1....


    • It is a WIKI page, you just put the page into edit mode and then change the entires in the table/grid of the sessions.
  • The new possibilities are great!! By watching the video also I notice that the application is more responsive than I'm accustomed to. For example when you select a different table line there seems to be no roundtrip. Does this have to do with the new Ajax enhancement you mention?

    I won't be able to go there, so I hope (beg would be more appropiate) some videos are made similar to that of the "Update your skills" series.

    • >I notice that the application is more responsive than I'm accustomed to

      I'm glad you noticed. SAP seriously rewrote major parts of the Unified Renderering engine that is used by both WDA and WDJ.  Part of this rewrite was to include the new AJAX functionality and other new features like the Islands, but there were tons of other optimzations as well. This Lightspeed (as it has been named) version of the WD renderer has a smaller browser footprint, uses load on demand for JavaScript libraries and Inline CSS and all around is just a whole lot faster.

      And yes you can count on some eLearning videos on these new technologies - after we dig ourselves out of the hole that is TechEd preparations. 🙂 

      • Hi Thomas,
        I hope lightspeed will be applicable for Adobe forms as well through WD..
        Any idea on ADS rendering improvements/ changes...

        Thanks and Regards,
        - anto

        • The Web Dynpro HTML rendering engine and the Adobe Forms PDF rendering engine are two very different technologies. The improvements of lightspeed have no impact on the ADS rendering.  The ADS rendering is actual controlled by Adobe since they supply the technology to SAP.
  • Hi,
    very nice! I have 2 questions:
    - Availability of shown features e.g. formatted Editor in Web Dynpro, in which version is it available, will it be/is it a standard?
    - Do you plan to offer the session ins Europe Teched, too ?

    Thank you a lot for your great work!
    Regards Marcus

    • > Availability of shown features e.g. formatted Editor in Web Dynpro, in which version is it available, will it be/is it a standard?

      All the features shown in this video will be available in standard as part of Web Dynpro ABAP as of NetWeaver 7.0 Enhancement Package 1.  This Enhancement Package for NetWeaver is just a couple weeks away from entering Ramp-Up, will be shown extensivly at TechEd, and then should become generally available in Q4 of 2008.

      Many of the same capabilities (Islands, AJAX framework, etc) will be coming shortly to Web Dynpro Java in a NetWeaver Enhancement Package for CE. This EnhP is on a different release schedule than the 7.0 version and does have slightly later timeframes which we haven't annouced just yet.

      >Do you plan to offer the session ins Europe Teched, too ?
      That really depends if we can get all the presenters to Berlin for the event or not.  Several of the presenters are still waiting to see if they can get approved.

      • Hi Thomas,

        I'm looking forward to come to the community day in Berlin if the mentor workshop will be offered there. When do you expect to know if this is going to happen. I ask this because my company wants to book the flight and hotel as soon as possible.

        Ben Meijs

        • I'm afraid that I don't know about Berlin.  I'm not really involved in making that decision.  I will be there, but so far none of the other 3 mentors giving this session will be in Berlin.
  • Hi Thomas,

    Really I am excited after reading this blog.I can assume how I will be expertise with latest technologies to be discussed in the session.
    I have two questions regarding the invitation and how to add my name to this wiki page am getting error to open the page when I have clicked.
    I already have registered for community day in Bangalore two weeks back.But still haven't get any invitation.So I am still in dark regarding joining to community day in Bangalore.

  • Hi Thomas,

    This blog is realy very helpful to give me idea about the comming attractions of Community Day in Bangalore. But I can't open the wiki link you have given here.
    Again in responce to the post of Abesh and blog of Craig,I have registered myself for community Day.But have not got any invitation till now.
    I do not like to miss the sessions but not sure how to join without invitation.
    Can you show me the way?


    • To both suman kumar chinnam and Anirban Bhattacharjee; I have no involvement in the Community Day Invitations, so I really can't say how the process works or why you having received an invitation yet.  I suggest that you contact Craig Cmehil.

      As to the sign up for the Mentors' Hands-On workshop at Bangalore, you wouldn't want to use Las Vegas WIKI but instead the Bangalore one:

      However I'm not sure how Craig wants to handle the registration for the Hands-On since seats are limited.  I will have to check with him.

  • Hi Thomas,
    I am just one year and 4months into ABAP.
    What do you think.Will this session be beneficial to me?
    As in i don't want someone who will really understand a lot not to attend the session simply because i have taken his / her seat.
    • It really depends how much you have been exposed to in that year and four months.  If you have been already doing some Web Dynpro ABAP then I'm sure you can get a lot out of this session.

      The session in Bangalore has a shorter time so we will focus on the WDA aspects - Adobe Flash Islands and Floorplan Manager. The updates to ABAP language and editor coming in EnhP2 will be covered mostly in the last session of the day that will be open to everyone.