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Author's profile photo Jon Reed

Podcast: HANA TechEd Preview and Skills Discussion – SAP Mentor Style

Best laid plans can come apart at the seams, and video shoots are no exception. I had lined up a “HANA at TechEd” preview video taping for with two HANA rock stars (a technical term for guys I trust for their expertise and fairness, far better than “gurus”), but the Skype video session borked (borked being another highly technical term for miscellaneous Skype failures). Fortunately I had a decent backup plan with an audio dial in. It may be that it worked out for the best: what we got instead was not only good banter about HANA TechEd themes but an in-depth HANA skills discussion, something I for one have been looking for.

So what we have here is a 50 minute podcast to get you geared up for HANA at TechEd and beyond, with fellow SAP Mentors Vijay Vijayasankar and Harald Reiter. Make sure to stay tuned to the end for some joking around about “gurus” and why none of us wants to be one. This is Harald’s first time on a JonERP podcast (I’m sure there will be more), and the skills discussion is inspired in part by Harald’s excellent SCN blog post, SAP HANA Skills Trap

A couple thoughts on the skills discussion: of particular interest were Harald and Vijay’s comments about future roles for ABAP developers on HANA projects. There’s no perfect answer to this question yet, but it’s an important topic. I also really enjoyed honing in on the data modeling and SQL scripting skill set that is vital to these first wave HANA Proof of Concept (POC) projects these guys have been involved with.

Note that you can look up Vijay and Harald’s SAP TechEd Vegas sessions in a couple of ways: 1. check out their speaker biographies, and also go through all the HANA sessions (keyword search: HANA)  to find the expert lounge and hands-on sessions they are involved with.

(If for any reason the player doesn’t work, you can download the podcast using the “download media” link on the right hand side).

(Trouble downloading? if for some reason it’s not playing in its entirety for you, check out the version on in the meantime. This podcast is also available on the JonERP iTunes feed.)

Ordinarily in include in-depth text highlights from the podcasts, but in the interests of time I am skipping those to get this out to you prior to the show. But I will include a few basic timestamps and topics below to give you a flavor in case you want to skim.

I. TechEd Preview, HANA News Stories Rehash, TechEd Burning HANA Questions (00:00 – 20:30)

II. HANA Skills discussion and breakdown (20:30 –  46:40)

(with some bonus discussion of BI 4.0 and HANA)

III. parting shots and jokin’ around about gurus and “thought leaders” or lack thereof (46:40 -50:00)

Plenty of interesting questions came up during the podcast, including but not limited to: 

– Whether the HANA cloud is relevant to customers now

– The impact of BW running on HANA in future releases

– The relative importance of HANA apps and what we’re expecting there


– Why data modeling skills are so important

– Whether outside HANA experts are needed on HANA projects

– Will ABAP developers have a role in the HANA world? 

Final note: usually I add music and some finishing touches to my podcasts. I’m skipping those this time in the interests of timely content. I think you’ll find the discussion worthwhile.

Funny how things work. Technical frustration led to one of my favorite podcasts of the year. Thanks to Harald and Vijay for such a great discussion.

Useful podcast links: You can look up Vijay and Harald’s SAP TechEd Vegas sessions in a couple of ways: 1. check out their speaker biographies, and also go through all the HANA sessions (keyword search: HANA)  to find the expert lounge and hands-on sessions the guys are involved with. Other links: SAP Mentor Initiative. You can also check out SAP’s In-Memory Home Page on SCN. Vijay Vijayasankar has been blogging in detail on HANA. Also recommended: the HANA posts of fellow SAP Mentors Vitaily Rudnytskiy and John Appleby, who has blogged in detail on HANA on his Bluefin Solutions blog and also on his blog on SCN. Fellow SAP Mentor Dick Hirsch’s forward-thinking SCN post on The specified item was not found. also comes up in the podcast discussion.

Look forward to seeing many of you in Vegas! If you’re looking for me there and can’t find me, pinging me on Twitter might be best.

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      Author's profile photo Gregory Misiorek
      Gregory Misiorek
      because Jon gets info ahead of TechEd which will help both those who go but also those who won't go to the event. for the time being, i'm currently in both and in neither group.

      HANA may be hyped, but the interviewers have overcome some early obstacles and give a great overview of what's in it for them behind the hype.

      my 2 cents