Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Oracle OpenWorld 2007 Part 7

The next topics I will cover are the special events at OpenWorld. OpenWorld featured several events that were similar to previous Hyperion conferences and some events that didn’t have an equivalent. First, both OpenWorld and Hyperion Solutions had a welcome party. The OpenWorld event, unlike Hyperion welcome parties that I remember, actually had a theme. The party was entitled “A Night of Nostalgia” and was held in the Howard Street tent. Unfortunately, I can’t give you any details on the party because I did go.

Instead of going to the opening party, I attended the Oracle ACE dinner that was held at the historic FlyTrap Restaurant just down the street from the Moscone Center. Hyperion never had anything like this where they actually recognized people from the community that help other users (which is something I happen to like to do). I immediately met Emily Yip. She runs the Oracle ACE program and basically a very nice person (and no, I am not just saying that so she will send me more OTN t-shirts ). One of the things I discussed with Emily was working together to create a team of Hyperion-related Oracle ACE’s. If you think you fit the profile of an ACE, please email me and I can guide you on the nomination process. Of course, they have a committee at Oracle that reviews the nominations and makes the awards so I can’t help you on that end. Oh, and the swag was unique. We all got red Oracle ACE vests that say ‘Oracle ACE’ (or Oracle ACE Director) on the front and have a huge black ace symbol on the back. It is kind of a cool vest and I felt a bit obligated to wear it but I did feel a little like I was wearing a bowling shirt.

During the dinner (which was delicious), I managed to find and sit with the Oracle Java Gurus. Some of the ACE’s at my table, in fact, were noted Oracle authors so, as an absolute geek, I feel as though I was at home. Next year, however, maybe we can have a table that discusses Hyperion stuff.

On Monday there was a Hyperion Customer Appreciation event at the Westin St Francis hotel on Union Square. There you could hobnob with some of the former Hyperion executives including John Kopcke (Hyperion Chief Technology Officer) and Robert Gersten (Hyperion Chief Development Officer) but the food vanished very quickly. There were many familiar faces from the Hyperion world between Hyperion employees, partners and customers.

After that event, the same hotel hosted the Oracle Technical Network (OTN) “Meet You There” night. They had games (Oracle Jeopardy), music and a Linux “install-fest”. Hyperion never had anything like that at the Solutions conferences and, frankly, the technical content of the Hyperion conferences seemed to decline over the years.

The big event for the week was the Oracle OpenWorld Appreciation Event which is similar in concept to what the Solutions Tuesday night events used to be. The event is essentially a three stage concert festival staged at the historical Cow Palace which has also hosted, among others, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix and The Doors. This is the only event, that I am aware of, that is not walking distance from the Moscone and nearby hotels. Unfortunately, I missed the bus as I was at a dinner with some Hyperion friend and had to cab it to the venue and it cost about $25 to get there. The headliners, who played simultaneously, were Billy Joel, Lenny Kravitz and Stevie Nicks with Mick Fleetwood. Some of my friends wandered between the stages but I stayed at Billy Joel. I saw the others within the last few years but had never been to a Billy Joel concert; I thought it was really good.

Finally, Oracle has a Thursday night ‘It’s a Wrap’ party at the Howard Street tent. This year, it featured two different bands and was highlighted by the grand prize drawing sponsored by Hitachi. During the Expo hours, there was a game you could play by visiting as many of the 30 or so kiosks scattered throughout the 2 separate Expo halls; this game got you entered into the drawing for the grand prize which was a new car. Hyperion never had anything like that. If fact, the ‘closing’ for the Hyperion conference essentially was that you went to one of the central meeting areas and picked up a sack lunch. No fanfare at all.

I still need to write about the Expo halls and will try to do that within the next few days.


Yehudi01 said...

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Tim Tow said...

Wow, that is 'mint'.. I have a 1970 Cessna 210K; 6 seats @ 185 mph. I often fly it on business trips, particularly those east of the Mississippi River.