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It's SAPPHIRE NOW and as usual it's a time for big announcements and providing an outlook on the near future. Yet, usually it's helpful to have a look back to better understand where you are and where you are heading - so let's rewind...

A look back

Two years back we launched the SCN Developer Center and the SAP HANA Cloud Platform (HCP) team takes pride in the fact that we were among the co-founders of this effort to empower our developer ecosystem and provide them with first class information to build new solutions using SAP technology. In those two years we saw over 200 blog posts being shared, more than 40 documents being published and over 700 discussions being posted - all signs of a flourishing community (and for sure worth a moment to toast to all of you who contributed!)

Looking back now and re-reading my own announcement blog post published back then makes me realize how far we have come. And while a few things changed (e.g. the name of the product), it's obvious that the platform matured a lot and that we did stay true to our mission of providing an enterprise cloud platform. For many on the team openness has always been a key characteristic of our platform and as we keep saying it is not only about technology, but equally well implies open communication, being approachable and actively engage with our users.

In that regard the SAP HANA Cloud Platform really pioneered and became a frontrunner on the developer empowerment front. We were first to offer a free & perpetual developer edition, we actively embraced to host samples under an open-source license and made our SDK and tools freely available via our tools page: SAP Development Tools for Eclipse. Instead of reinventing the wheel we opted to embrace open standards and integrate with technology standards such as using Eclipse as our standard IDE and just recently by providing our SDK and APIs via Maven Central (please read this blog for further details: Building Java Web Applications with Maven)

Yet, sharing the required tools & technologies alone won't cut it and without properly educating our developer base it's rather meaningless. From the beginning we aimed to provide a first class online documentation and getting your feedback about new features by making BETA versions available early-on on our trial landscape. We openly share updates and new features via our release notes and regularly talk about what's hot through various channels such as CodeTalks, DevTalks and of course using social channels such as Flipboard or Twitter.

Free education is a must-have and we are very happy & grateful about the success of our openSAP courses (an effort lead by rui.nogueira), which we complement with more & more tutorials available via the SAP HANA Academy. Not to forget about the numerous meet-ups we conducted as part of the broader SAP CodeJam series, which provide us with the unique opportunity to meet with you face-to-face and and really get to know you all...

The present

As you can see there's a whole lot of material available underlining our ambitions to make it as simple as possible for you to develop on top of the SAP HANA Cloud Platform. In many of these activities we team up with the global Developer Relations team lead by thomas.grassl working with passionate developer evangelists such as helena.losada, craig.cmehil, ian.thain and jonathanb.

In that tradition, we are very happy to announce today that the SAP HANA Cloud Platform is getting a new digital home:

The idea behind it is estabhlish a single landing page for all things related to SAP HANA Cloud Platform - a central location to provide all information needed to learn about the platform. Of course, developers are one of the most important audience we want to address! In the designated developer section we provide lots of tutorials and learning material to support you in your daily development tasks, so please take the time to have a look around....

In fact, HCP is spearheading this initiative driven in close collaboration with the Developer Relations team to come up with a state-of-the art developer center for all SAP technologies. Consequently, every single developer working with SAP technologies is well advised to keep an eye out on this space! What you see today is merely the beginning, a baseline if you will and - in true cloud fashion - we'll constantly roll-out updates and improvements from now on...

Note-worthy: the look & feel of our new home is part of yet an even bigger initiative within SAP called 1DX, which is driven by the team of maggiefox. I know we'll hear much more about this during the next few days of SAPPHIRE NOW. So, if you are interested in that topic (and who wouldn't be!?!) then you now know the keywords to look out for...


Before I move on I really would like to thank all my colleagues who have been working tirelessly on the new site for the last couple of weeks. As such I owe a big shout-out to the marketing colleagues in amit.sinha's team, namely kijoon.lee, evan.poli, suresh.ramakrishnan, and andrew.shriner.

Major thanks go out for thomas.grassl and jonathanb for helping to frame the developer section and making sure the site is aligned with the broader developer engagement topic across SAP.

Last, but not least I would like to express my sincere thanks to my team mates who have worked extra hard to compile the first batch of developer tutorials for the site: thomas.bieser, jens.glander, bertram.ganz, timo.lakner and markus.tolksdorf. You guys set the gold standard for developer content!

(Of course, there have been many more involved in making this happen, so please excuse if I forgot to mention anyone in particular - you know who you are!)

A look ahead

I close this post by re-iterating what I said at the beginning: It's SAPPHIRE NOW and as usual it's a time for big announcements and providing an outlook on the near future!

I know for a fact that there will be plenty of announcements being made that relate to the SAP HANA Cloud Platform in one way or the other. There'll be some great news for developers, but also for customers. Without giving too much away just yet (don't want to be accused for jumping the gun!) I am excited to hear how the developer community reacts to the news about the release of the River Rapid Application Development (#RDE) toolkit based on HCP. There'll be also plenty of talk about the revamped SAP HANA Marketplace (HMP), which is a central component of the bigger cloud platform story. Staying true to our ambitions to be the designated extension platform for other SAP products there'll also be news about how-to build social apps using SAP JAM and HCP. [Update: Seems like sameer.patel just blogged about this!]

Unfortunately, I won't be able to attend SAPPHIRE NOW in person this year and hence I'll have to watch from afar... still, it's going to be an interesting week for sure!