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If you’re a veteran of SAP TechEd conferences, you know that the above icon can be a sign of a hard fought victory to stake your place in a virtual line for the session “of your dreams.”


Shock: @thomas_jung @ewH @RichHeilman your early 4 hour hands on is full already                       2:03 PM Sep 14th  via Echofon        


I will admit (pun intended) that my dreams are not always the same as many others, and I’m also fortunate to be good friends with Tom, Eddie, and Rich, so when I’m trying to build my agenda getting up close and personal with the ABAP masters is not a requirement.  I know, however, that one does need to get started close to the opening bell for many, if not all, of the hands-on sessions to get the pass.  The TechEd EMEA curtain rose extra early (3 AM for me I think), so I was not the very first person in line.  And, to make it more challenging, I had heard from a fellow SAP Mentor that there may be issues with registration.  Getting the admission badge of a specific color (Speaker, Vendor, etc.) is important in that not all of them allow access to all events.  At least once I’ve gotten a complimentary pass that did not allow hand-on session registration without extra cost, or negotiating.


When I was able to get into the system, I had no problem reserving the sessions I wanted – the main problem was trying to choose among all of the possibilities.  Unless a presentation is particularly compelling, I’ve learned to avoid the 4 hour classes.  There are just so many other things going on, as well as people to meet, to sit still for that long.  And then there are the time conflicts to contend with.  I had to abandon one session that I really wanted to attend  (ALM105 – Why Sustainability is IT’s Next Big Thing) to get a hands-on session (ALM276 – How to Find Waste in Custom Code) that I also really wanted to attend.


I’ll post my complete agenda, in case anyone is interested, after one or two more passes through the schedule.  I typically look first for speakers that I want to meet, or have met and know will share something useful to me(e.g., Dieter Krieger, Timo Stelzer, Irene Hopf).  Many, though not all, speakers have a thumbnail photo on one of the search pages (like:


Now for the agenda tool bad news.  On the plus side, the Expert Lounge sessions are better integrated than in the past.  On the minus side, they still are somewhat distinct, a bit tricky to search through, and show up separate on the reports.  The worst news is the Excel download.  I will say it functions better than the version that was running during the ASUG Annual Conference / Sapphire Now, which did not download to Excel at all, but this one still needs a tweak.


Day Start Time
 Tuesday, October 12, 2010  9:00 a.m.
 Tuesday, October 12, 2010  * 11:00 a.m.
 Tuesday, October 12, 2010  * 11:00 a.m.
 Thursday, October 14, 2010  * 8:45 a.m.
 Thursday, October 14, 2010  11:00 a.m.
 Thursday, October 14, 2010  3:30 p.m.
 Wednesday, October 13, 2010  10:30 a.m.
 Wednesday, October 13, 2010  4:30 p.m.


Excel does not recognize the date fields at all, so sorting puts Wednesday at the end, and the flags to show “overlap” confuse the fact that the time fields are what they are.  The spreadsheet maintains the separations among education sessions / pod sessions and expert lounge, and sorting them together by time is required in order to make useful decisions about “where am I now” and “where am I next?”


I have reserved an Expert Lounge session:








EXP447 When the lights   go out, is your data center still humming? Wednesday,   October 13, 2010 1:30 p.m. 2:00 p.m. Expert   Networking Session


It was a bit tricky to find a time to do this when I didn’t also want to be somewhere else.  I will say that the reservation tool for these times was awesome, showing all the lounges at one time, and who else is already booked.  I don’t have the same audience as Thomas Jung, but I don’t want to compete with their noise level either.


 Here’s a view zoomed in on my grid session:




And here is one day’s worth of sessions for the 8 lounges in Berlin.  You can see that not many sessions are vacant.  I would recommend checking back, as speakers and other experts may find times in their schedule to set up another reservation.




What am I going to cover in my 30 minutes?  I’m going to try to jam in as much as possible about our experiences with virtualization, as well as more general commentary about the SAP Sustainability projects.  As a moderator of the SCN discussion forum  on Sustainability, I know there is a lot of hype, a lot of expectations, but maybe not a lot of substance yet.  I expect to bring in several other experts, once I’m sure of their schedules.  You will get a lot from the half-hour.


Timo Stelzer informed me there is a new “blog category” for Green IT:




I had been aware of a discussion  forum on that topic, though as I’m not a moderator there (yet) I have not spent much time viewing it.  Perhaps soon though.


There’s lots more to share on what’s happening before and during TechEd.  I now have my German Rail Pass (5 days this time) and will join the Clue Train on Saturday, as a precursor to the Innovation Weekend.  On the latter, we had a planning session yesterday.  I’ll list a few of the names I noted during that session, and fill in roles and responsibilities, and maybe references, as time permits.



Marilyn Pratt

me (@JSpath55)
Alexander Grobe
clint nelsen
Dick Hirsch
Graham Robbo
Harald Reiter
Krishna Moorthy
Leonardo De Araujo
Matt Harding
Michelle Crapo
Philip Kisloff
Sue Keohan

NOT (g)
Christian Janiesch
Craig Cmehil
Greg Chase
Jason Cao
John Astill
Kirby Leong
Matthias Steiner
Oliver Kohl
Steve Williams 


The “(g)” means they are a guest in the SAP connect system, or most likely, non-SAP employees.  That would be “customer”, “consultant”, etc.  Here’s a link to the top level wiki page.  It’s going to be an awesome pre-conference network-a-ganza.



And a totally gratuitous video clip:





Not yet an official SCNotties submission, but perhaps soon!

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  1. Nigel James
    It’s going to be great to meet you Jim.
    I don’t really know why they provide an excel download. A better alternative would be to encode the ‘appointments’ as an ical feed that could integrate into you calendar.

    Perhaps SAP is limited by the functionality provided by


    1. Jim Spath Post author
      Nigel – likewise, it will be good to meet.  This is only my second visit to the fatherland.  As for downloads, I expect the Excel tweaks I suggested (not for the first time) would be pretty minor.  That format is valuable for sharing with others, especially when posting publicly, like this: ASUG-ANNUAL-CONFERENCE-2010-SPATH.
      It should not be too strenuous to also offer ical (.ics or .vcs) formats.  I tend to shy away from importing into my work calendar until I’ve tossed the bones on session conflicts; otherwise the mobile device might send me down the wrong hallway, reality check notwithstanding.


  2. Former Member
    Thanks for this feedback, Jim. I’ll  address those issues you mentioned with the download to Excel with our development team and respond here once they are fixed.

    As to Nigel’s suggestion, we do actually add the iCal option to the personal agenda builder in the last week before the conference, once room information is added and there is less risk of schedule changes. The rooms assignments are completed after the agenda builder opens and are based on session popularity, so we can make the most of the bigger rooms. Attendees will receive an email the week before the conference announcing agenda builder updates such as these additions: room assignments, add to calendar option, and presentations.

    Please feel free to send additional website feedback to me and, especially to report bugs or any major pain points that might affect other users.

    See you in Berlin!

    1. Former Member

      Thank you!! Your responsiveness is really a breath of fresh air after the response when issues were raised with the Agenda Builder for the ASUG/SAPPHIRE conferences, or more precisely the lack thereof. I, too, prefer to use Excel for my Agenda, since I have so many private appointments to merge into my schedule for the week. I will look forward to your follow-up and to trying out the improved functionality.


    2. Former Member
      The download to Excel feature from the My Agenda page has been updated to correct the date format. You should be ablel to sort away now. Let me know if you find any further issues.
      1. Jim Spath Post author
        Linda.  Oh yes, this schedule view glitch is fixed now, thank you very much.  I am glad I continued to whine about this bug (year after year) and that someone like you picked it up and ran with it.  Others might simply have griped to themselves or others nearby.  Great job, and thank your team for the quick action!
  3. Marilyn Pratt
    Okay, you got my attention.
    Thanks for the promo around Innovation Weekend by the way.
    There is already a wonderful response to our weekly online meetups as well as signups for the event.
    Innovation Weekend Virtual Meetup #1- Business Cases

    Now, you will be in Berlin and Jeremiah Stone will be in LV so that won’t work for your Sustainability Session but I’ll see if I can’t get some of the folks who will be in EMEA to join us.


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