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Author's profile photo Wouter Lemaire

My First Virtual TechEd

SAP TechEd for the first time virtual โ€“ It was great!

TechEd is a well-known event for the most of us and most of you out there have already attented one or more editions. A virtual one was new for the most of us. After attending, I must say: SAP did a very nice job. I guess theyโ€™ve learned a lot from SAPHire earlier this year ๐Ÿ˜‰ !

What made this edition so good? The answer to this question is probably different for every one of you. In this blog I will share why I liked it that much.

For starting, Channel One made the difference compared to another virtual event in my opinion. As some of us posted on twitter, it was our Netflix for a couple of days ๐Ÿ˜Š.

Secondly: the keynote. Iโ€™m not going to say I liked the complete keynote but the announcement of the free tier for SAP Cloud Platform made my day! On top of that, involving the community into this keynote was genius and made it so much different! Would this have been done if TechEd would not be virtual? Anyway, itโ€™s good that SAP knows its community and listens to it!

For me, The best session of all was without a doubt the developer keynote! Next time 2-hour developer keynote? It was great to see how all the different SAP technologies work together to build great applications! One small side note, it was maybe a bit short to go into deeper details which would have been nice to know. The best of it, all code is published on GitHub:

Special thanks to DJ Adams , Rich Heilmanย  and Kevin Muessigย !

Content wise I had the feeling there were less sessions then on a normal TechEd, at least when you focus on SCP and CAP. You had sessions of all topics but only a few for each topic. This might have been because it is all online and the content can be watched again.

Nevertheless, I was able to find and follow some great sessions. Without going in too much detail, Iโ€™m going to take out a few points that caught my attention.

First of all, compared to last year, the SAP Cloud Platform strategy was not completely clear in terms of possible runtimes. You had NEO and CloudFoundry available in the SAP Cloud Platform with Kyma on the horizon but no clear recommendation with no clear future of Neo.

This changed at TechEd 2020! Kyma is ready to be used and SAP has a clear recommendation. As we all expected, NEO is not part of the recommendation anymore. Even we all expected this, itโ€™s a very important message from SAP to all of his customers! No discussion anymore about NEO or CloudFoundry. CloudFoundry is the way forward and you even have the option to go for Kyma!

The next point that caught my attention was the SAP AI strategy. Here as well SAP figured out how to clearly structure all the pieces in a logical way that we all can understand on how it works together:

  • The AI foundation which allows you to start completely from scratch for training your models with your own datasets. SAP can train many models for their customers but every customer is unique and will have the need for his own models.
  • SAP AI business service are services that are created on top of the AI foundation and every developer can use without being a Data scientist! We can all create smart apps without being smart ๐Ÿ˜Š (joking)
  • Off course, top level, all SAP solutions will use as many as possible of these SAP AI business or foundation services internally.
  • The part I admire the most is how SAP Conversational AI is positioned in this slide. It fits perfect! SAP Conversational AI allows you create chatbots completely from scratch but SAP will also has out-of-the-box chatbots as part of CoPilot ( not sure this is still the correct name )

Next point has been mentioned already several times for a few years ๐Ÿ˜Š I actually never really agreed with SAP on this one BUT Iโ€™m not so sure anymore. With all the new features of Fiori Elements, integration with the programming models (RAP & CAP) and specially the new tooling, I have to admit: itโ€™s getting better!

Last but not least, I love to see how people of the SAP Community are being recognized for what they are doing with SAP in their spare time! These are the people that challenge SAP and take SAP to the next level to become the better version of itself!

Big thanks to everyone in the SAP community for sharing all your knowledge and of course the winners of Devtoberfest 2020 Gregor Wolf , Volker Buzek and Mike Zaschkaย ! You all helped the SAP Community to get the recognition it deserves!

One more thing, being with my little devils made me follow TechEd with less guilt ๐Ÿ˜Š It felt great to take a break and have some family time ๐Ÿ˜‰

Speaking for myself, I was a losing a bit the community feeling without the SAP Inside Tracks and meeting you all in person.

TechEd was exactly what I needed! Maybe even the SAP Community…ย  Thank you TechEd, my SAP Community feeling is back!


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      Author's profile photo Bernhard Luecke
      Bernhard Luecke

      Thanks Wouter for this professional and personal recompilation!

      Author's profile photo Marius Obert
      Marius Obert

      It's nice to hear that you enjoyed the virtual event. Thanks for this post, Wouter!
      I hope we can soon meet in in-person events again.

      Author's profile photo Venu Ravipati
      Venu Ravipati

      Hi Wouter Lemaire,

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts. very helpful..

      Best Regards,