Today was the official start of Oracle OpenWorld, JavaOne and Oracle Develop. 41,000 some odd people descending upon the city of San Francisco...madness.
John and I were up early (relatively speaking of course), but I think John was up like 3 hours before me. I am surprised he didn't punch me in the kidney or something to wake me up.
With my new found sherpa (I am navigationally challenged), we headed down to register in the hopes of beating the crowd. That didn't work out so well. Lines were long. Fortunately both of us have blogger credentials and they had a special line for us (FTW!)...we were in and out in 5 minutes.
We then headed over to the Exadata SIG, which was a pretty informal gathering of customers, implementers and some Oracle representation (Anita Jackson and Phil Stephenson specifically, with a special guest appearance by Dan Norris).
After that, John and I split up. He's an UPPER( 'dba' ) and I am not. I was interested in the BI offerings, specifically the latest release of OBIEE 11g.
At this point (4:41 AM EST), I don't remember exactly what I attended, but I will try and recall what I can.
First up I believe was a session by the esteemed Jon Mead [blog|twitter], of RittmanMead fame (but not quite the Person of the Year). This was basically the life cycle of a BI/DW implementation in the retail sector on top of Exadata (v1). Of course I had to ask questions...specifically around the methodology they employed. Specifically, I wanted to know what tools they used (Trac Wiki, Subversion, etc) and how they used them.
In between sessions, I got to run into old friends and meet some new ones. Let's see, I met Christian Screen of BICG, Pete Scott of RittmanMead, Sunil Ranka, Jon Mead (naturally), and quite a few others. This is the part of this event that I really like, the opportunity to meet some of the industry leaders, people I can really learn from. I received an Oracle ACE designation last November, but I still feel like I am way out of my league...
Speaking of Oracle ACEs, I went on a dinner cruise this evening with Oracle ACEs and Oracle ACE Directors. I would call it a booze cruise, but that might not be politically correct. Who cares?
Got to meet Dan Vlamis, Roel Hartman, Cary Millsap (who I got to talk quite a bit about baseball with...a nice departure from the regular technical talk), Marco Gralike and some others for the first time. Also got to see some others that I had met previously like Ian Abramson (former IOUG President), Mark Rittman (of course, but he wasn't sporting his person of the year credentials)...and probably I few I have forgotten (they were serving beer and wine at this event).
Overall, Day 0 was awesome. I got to talk to so many people and learn a few new things. Asked questions, lots of questions. This is why I love these events.
Oh yeah, I met my unicorn, you know, the one person in the world who has worked with me in the past and would actually consider working with me in the future. :)
If you have never been to OpenWorld, Kaleidoscope, COLLABORATE, you must go to one of these events. Not only for the people that you meet but it invigorates you and gives you a greater sense of purpose (and also makes you feel pretty small).