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The Innovation Garage

The Innovation Garage

Next month I will attend my fifth SAP TechEd event in a row. The reason I am continually drawn to this event, is the opportunity to collaborate with industry specialists and to load up on innovative ideas and industry trends. The difference for me this year is that I have been fortunate enough to be involved in an SAP DemoJam entry from Matt Harding and Alisdair Templeton.  I have worked with these two talented Enterprise Software practitioners for many years and attended several SAP Community events together. Regardless of who we work for, and which location we live in, we are drawn together by the same motivation – always take an innovative approach to developing new capabilities, and collaborate with your tribe to get a well-rounded perspective.

The SAP DemoJam entry began as a discussion over coffee earlier this year, and evolved as ideas and industry trends were absorbed from our participation in the SAP Community Network and engaging with various thought leaders on the Twitter stream. Over several bursts of late night creative energy, the SAP DemoJam entry was formulated from a collaborative effort between Matt (Aurora Energy) in Tasmania and Alisdair (Acclimation) in Melbourne.  Some weeks later, there were long distance high-fives as Craig Cmehil announced their successful entry. Once the jubilation settled, it was decided to take the DemoJam entry – and improve it further.

Some wild haired guy called Einstein once remarked “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”  So this is where another wild haired guy came up with the idea to facilitate an unconventional approach to inject another dose of innovative energy into the SAP DemoJam entry – I call it my “Innovation Garage”. The format for my Innovation Garage is loosely based on the Innovation Weekend concept being adopted for SAP TechEd this year.  We opened up access to the Acclimation offices in Melbourne and provided full access to all the tools a good Technician could wish for:-

  • Whiteboards and flipcharts
  • Several high end laptops (AlienWare and MAC were the order of the day)
  • Phone lines (open to call international if required)
  • Fast unobstructed internet access (no firewalls, no filtering, no restricted sites)
  • All the gadgets (iPad, iPhone3, iPhone4, HTC Andriod)
  • Catering (pizza, sweets, fruit, soda and beers)
  • Entertainment (Xbox 360 Guitar Hero on a large screen and appropriate music to innovate by)
  • Resident support staff (for those last minute installs and support requirement)
  • Face to face interaction (Matt Harding from Tasmania flew in)

We then went a step further by inviting others from the Acclimation office to come in and see the Innovation Garage in all its glory.

By the end of the day, the collaboration, open sharing and Google style work environment produced some stunning results. Without giving away too many secrets, I can tell you that the Innovation Garage helped to craft Cloud computing, Code Share, Geocoding and a Business Objects dashboard into an already exciting DemoJam presentation.

Why not show your support for Matt and Alisdair on their DemoJam crusade by subscribing to our YouTube channel. This channel will be regularly updated with videos leading up to the DemoJam night on Tuesday October 19th in Las Vegas. Be part of our journey from Australia and our road trip from Los Angeles to Las Vegas by watching our progress on YouTube.  Join us during the Innovation Weekend in Las Vegas and ask us about the DemoJam entry and our Innovation Garage. Let us show you how to find a new route to a known destination.


 What good are ideas if they can’t be shared?

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  • Sure, I will show my support to Matt and Alisdair by subscribing to youtube channel.
    I thought innovation is about finding a new route to a new destination.
    Thanks for writing thought provoking blog in simple language:)

    Looking forward to meeting you in IW and TechEd in Las Vegas.