I am honored to introduce our new Moderator Spotlight, Ervin Szolke. Moderator Spotlight is our way to thank and highlight significant moderators. Ervin moderates the SCN Web Dynpro Java and SAP NetWeaver Development Infrastructure (NWDI) . He also supports many other moderators being the SAP Product Support SCN discussions champion. Read the interview below for insights and to learn more about him.


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Please tell us a bit about yourself:


I live not far away from Budapest, in a city called Budakalász, together with my wife Nóra and our two wire-haired dachshunds. I started my IT career at Siemens where I developed the E-mail client for mobile phones, right before the Smartphone era. Some years later, in 2004 I joined SAP as a Product Support Engineer. I worked on Installation issues for a couple of years, and then moved to NetWeaver J2EE Engine support. I ended-up in the Java Development area which very much matched my developer profile. Today I am focusing on HANA Cloud Platform related cases.

Last year I joined the Product Support Knowledge Management Board — led by Gerlinde Wallner — as the SCN Discussions Process Owner (Blog and Q&A activities related to Product Support). We are responsible for designing the KM training material, rolling out new processes and working to improve our presence on SCN which is sometimes a challenge given that we have around 2500 engineers.


My hobbies are constantly changing;I am always diving into something new. I like creative work, there was a time when I was very much interested in painting, learning to play the guitar, or even digging into android game development (Hungry Beagles — it’s not a super great game, most likely my first and last one, but I enjoyed the learning process).
These days I am preoccupied with the house we bought recently. As you may all know, building a house is a process that never ends.


When did you join the SCN community? 


I joined in 2005 when we had SDN and I became a fan of it immediately. However at that time due to various internal projects I had little time to visit it, but later when we migrated to SCN I became more active and I was in a fortunate position to test the platform before it went live. These are even more exciting times; I am glad to be part of the 1DX journey.


What motivates you? Why did you join?


As a Product Support Engineer I wanted to see a different perspective. Processing support incidents is similar to Q&As on SCN, but the problems are not exactly the same. I like that working on SCN is rather a collaborative work and the gamification system is also motivating. SCN is full of brilliant people and I enjoy the party. πŸ™‚


Why do you moderate? What spaces do you moderate?


To learn and to teach. I am moderator and space editor in Java development area, more precisely I am active in spaces that are related to NetWeaver Development Infrastructure and WebDynpro for Java.


What do you think is most important in your moderation?


It is very important to be fair when you moderate. If a thread or post is reported for abuse, I check whether the complaint is valid. I am very customer focused. I always try to see things through their eyes as if the problem they are facing is mine. Normally I have no problem with basic questions if the user is new to SAP. Otherwise, I politely ask them to google first. When a moderator approval notification comes in,  I deal with it immediately so the user doesn’t need to wait too long. I believe that after they get my feedback it encourages them to follow the Rules Of Engagement.


What are the differences between moderating a small vs. large community?


NWDI has less visitors while the load on WebDynpro Java is higher. Keeping a smaller community in motion is a bigger challenge. I am lucky though because both of the spaces have their own passionate and diligent users answering questions, like Jun Wu.


If you could offer one bit of advice to new members or new moderators what would it be and why?


Reading and searching is fundamental. Invest time to do your homework before posting a question. There are plenty of guides out there and SAP invests a lot in creating and maintaining these resources.
As a moderator be aware that there is no ultimate right or wrong. Be patient, polite and help wherever you can..


How has the SCN community helped you?


I always appreciate feedback from customers, which I send to developer colleagues for consideration in order to make the product better. I encountered ideas and approaches that I hadn’t considered before and they helped to fine-tune SAP Notes, Wiki pages, help.sap.com documents as well as my own knowledge base.


Have you ever attended SAP TechEd? How was it? What did you most enjoy?


I have been invited a couple of times as I am Topic Leader in multiple spaces as of 2012, but I never had a chance to actually attend.

How do you think the way you were raised affected your career?

My dad bought a C64 machine in the 80s. Besides playing a lot of games, I started to implement programs in Simon Basic. I was hooked immediately. Later on, my mom hired a private teacher to teach me programming in Basic and Pascal. I still don’t know how they knew that the IT business would grow so big. I also remember our school won a competition in the 90s and the award was an Internet connection. I was like hmm… what a useless prize… what is Internet actually?

πŸ™‚

Please share a fun fact/story about yourself that people don’t know


I became Architect on the 1st of April. I thought for a while it is an April Fools’ joke, but today I still have this role.

If you could be  super hero, who would you be?


Most likely Donald Ervin Knuth. He is a super hero to me.

Name the person who affected you most in your career/way of thinking and why?


József Dallos. He was my mentor at a previous company and he taught me a lot about programming. His guidance enabled me a decade ago to implement a compiler that was compiling Pascal subset to JVM bytecode and the code was implemented in C++. It was a nice combination of different languages. He actually owns hexadecimal dollar.


Is there another moderator or community member that you’ve found incredibly helpful? 


I always find take-aways in the comments of Jürgen Lins, Ludek Uher, Tammy Powlas , Lars Breddemann , Andy Silvey , Mike Appleby , Robin van het Hof , Benny Schaich-Lebek (from whom I inherited the NWDI Space Editor role) and last but not least the whole SCN Community Management. πŸ˜‰

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18 Comments

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    1. Ervin Szolke

      I am watching you, Jürgen! 😎

      I am also glad that you help me to make SCN and Support a better place (e.g. when reporting broken links).

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  1. Robin van het Hof

    Great to know about you Ervin! I still remember years ago, when I had a nasty NWDI issue and you helped me tremendously!

    Your help and knowledge have not only helped me, but numerous others as well, so I am genuinely happy to see your contributions to the community are being noticed! πŸ˜€

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      1. Robin van het Hof

        Ahhh… I can still recall the endless hours with graph paper, trying to figure out why the princess sprite I was supposed to see on the screen looked like Optimus Prime’s vomit… πŸ˜›

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        1. Ervin Szolke

          I remember my father dictating a program letter by letter, digit by digit, without getting a single word of what we are doing. Early variant of copy-paste or… code reuse? πŸ˜•

          The very first program we wrote… oh wait… “implemented” was a text based Torpedo game. I felt like a real pro: “Umm… this line should start with 10, no?” OR “Dad… have you seen the doublequote character today? I can’t find it“. Then we entered RUN (Simple…). 

          Some years later I got my Simons’ Basic book, and created nice colourful air balloon sprites, but then… Optimus came. 😐

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    1. Ervin Szolke

      Thanks Lars!

      I am sure I’ll need helping hands in future as well once the new platform is in place and it is good to know I can always count on you! πŸ™‚

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  2. Matt Fraser

    Great to see this recognition! Just as with Robin, Ervin has helped me through some very tricky NWDI issues, both in Customer Incidents and here on SCN, and he has always been a pleasure to work with, not only because he is a master of his trade but also because he comes across this digital medium as a genuinely nice guy, truly interested in positive outcomes for all concerned.

    Great also to learn a little more about you, Ervin!

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    1. Ervin Szolke

      Thank you very much Matt!

      I hope you are fine and things are going well in Seattle.

      I always like when you ask a question on SCN (or at Product Support) because I am confident you checked things from every angle and raised your question only afterwards and the problem you ran into is a great challenge.

      I think I remember a specific case when we were dealing with comparison tracks, right?

      Martin Pospischil and Daniel Kordes helped me in that very case a lot so let me mention their name here as well.

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

      Best Regards,

      Ervin

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    1. Ervin Szolke

      Hello Stefan,

      Thank you for the nice words and thank you again as I remember you helped answering questions so many times in both NWDI and WD4J topic spaces !


      Cheers,

      Ervin

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  3. Jaime Farinos

    Great to see you spotlighted here Ervin! Well deserved! You are a true inspiration for all of those improving themselves and always wanting to learn!

    Cheers,

    Jaime

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    1. Ervin Szolke

      Thank you, Jaime!!

      I think the same about you and I guess I learnt this attitude partly from you.

      I hope we see each other again soon. Szimpla? 😎

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  4. Hemanth Kumar

    Way to go Ervin; this blog has just managed to capture 10% of all your feats πŸ™‚ , rest we all know πŸ™‚ .  SAP teched is a great event and you should give it a go (via company of course πŸ™‚ ) when you get a chance.

    Regards,
    Hemanth

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