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Jim's blogs on SAP TechEd 2009 Berlin   

Clue Train










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Clue #1 - no prepared agendas; throw the rule book out the window.

People I met, in roughly order of appearance (forgive me for botched spelling and memory loss):

Craig Cmehil
Oliver Kohl
Gregor Wolf
Dennis Howlett
Paul Centen
Michael Schwandt
Anne K. P. Yojibee

Boarding later:
Michael Bechauf

Initial meeting by Starbucks.

2 clips of Craig - "one like this and one like this".

Then, meandering to Track 5.

Then, train was 10 minutes late.

Then, boarding the train and finding our "seats".  Took over 2 tables and environs.

Sitting down was interesting social experiment.
Women sat at one table
Craig, Dennis, ? and Lily (the youngest clue trainer) sat at the other table

I sat alone, initially.


Discussion of open source with Erwin Tenhumberg.  My company only uses it peripherally with SAP.  Probably true for most large companies,

craig/dennis geekdom

Buttons, stickers,

Chat with Anne on new development insights

Chatted with Paul on his Sustainability blogs, which I had not yet read.
Paul said he contrasted sustainability with CSR, how they are disconnected.
I shot 2 minutes of Paul answering the question "why should someone blog?"

Oliver showed a network tool on his iPhone, which looks at SDN business car, connects me to other users, has a "dumb" network feature that finds my favorite users. Assumption is that if 2 people "favorite" each other they are friends rather than fans.  Could build up a people-network connectivity view from this (algorithm?)

30 seconds video of Anne explaining how hard she works, even on the weekend.



Talked to Michael Bechauf; he asked what "MD" was on my business card address.
He's working on dual citizenship, currently a German citizen living in the US 16 (?) years.  I told him there are 6 states in the US starting with the letter M.  He got a couple.

  • Massachusetts
  • Montana
  • Missouri
  • Mississippi
  • Maryland
  • Maine

We then talked about the Enterprise Support controversy, what it means, how the message was delivered. I see it as very important to customers, particularly bad timing with an economic downturn.

People remember the 1 out of 100 bad experience.
Challenging to report, suggest improvements, praise.
2 of my suggestions so far:

  • Include at least a portion of the message in email notification
  • Give me fair warning that service connection is closing

Talked to Michael Bechauf about the efficacy of the mentor program, compared it to the ASUG model.  ASUG has my peers, people supporting large SAP implementations, seasoned users, influencers.  Mentor program much newer, includes cross reference of global SAP "community", so developers, customers, experts in multiple areas. One challenge is qualifying and disqualifying mentors.

Discussions on who is staying where; some in Radisson, others closer to ICC.
Jim in Westin...

"A suit hotel"

Impressions of Berlin:

Huge train station - large scale architecture

Paul Centen went to "Service Point", asked about U train, S train.
No Underground near train station - advice was to take S train, then U train.
Went outside; second opinion; Gregor said - it's over there, past the Reichstag.
Paul advised me not to walk through the city (it was after 9PM).