A taste of Mastering SAP Technologies Sydney 2012: part 1

In this series of blog posts, Simon Kemp gives his perspective on the recent Mastering SAP Technologies event, held in Sydney. First up, ‘The Keynote Sessions – Did they deliver?’

 

I recently attended the Mastering SAP Technologies conference in Sydney Australia presented by the Eventful Group. This was an excellent event and a great opportunity for local SAP customers and partners to gain a valuable insight into the direction of the SAP technology stack, to socialise and network and to meet many of the great Aussie SAP mentors!

The event is a two-day conference that was preceded by an Inside Track event on the Sunday afternoon. The main conference has four tracks, so (until I work out that whole cloning problem) I was only able to attend a fraction (let’s go with about 1/4) of the content. Hopefully you will find some of the things I took away with me as interesting as I did and you will be intrigued to find out more. I have included links, where possible.

One nice aspect of this event was the relative lack of “sales talk” and a firm focus on “how and why things work the way they do”. I love this – I recently have come to the conclusion that more than anything else I love to understand how and why something works the way it does. If you are interested in reading a good general overview of how the conference was presented, I can recommend reading this blog post from Dennis Howlett.
Over the next few days, I’ll provide you with an overview of what I took from the event – these are just my own experiences and perspectives based on what I saw, so if you see something that inspires debate, let me know.

The Keynote Sessions – did they deliver?

There were some good keynotes from SAP CIO Oliver Bussmann, SAP president of global solutions Sanjay Poonen, SVP communities and social media at SAP, Mark Yolton, and independent enterprise mobility analyst and consultant André Guillemin.

  • HANA, HANA, HANA!: (Pronounced HAA-NA as in  HAA-SSO…) Seriously, this is no passing fad – this will be the database that all of SAP will run on in the not too distant future. Go and learn a bit about it – it won’t be a waste of your time. Also don’t expect everything to run faster on HANA – certain types of queries will, but be careful to tune properly and choose wisely (column or row storage?), otherwise performance could be worse.
  • Mobility: The message is starting to become more coherent, but it is still a struggle to get an easy-to-digest message. I wonder now how the recently announced Syclo acquisition will add to the mix!?  In any case, SAP seems to be “eating their own dog food” on this and are leading by example with an aggressive internal roll-out of mobile devices and applications.
  • HANA and mobility – a match made in heaven?: Perhaps. It makes sense that if you use HANA to reduce the time it takes to crunch data, that you want to get this data to people wherever they are so they can make decisions faster… no point in waiting for them to get back to their desk right?
  • Windows 8, laptop killer?: What do you think – could the hybrid mobile/desktop approach render the traditional laptop obsolete? I think this has some merit for the majority of people who currently use laptops at work.

You can actually watch some of the keynote sessions here.  I hope you find them as thought-provoking as I did.  IMHO, the sessions delivered what they should have – they provided some valuable insight into emerging and existing technologies. They also raised a whole host of questions and ideas. What did you think?

Simon Kemp is the service line lead, User Productivity, for Plaut. He can be contacted by email: simon.kemp@plaut.com.au.

 

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