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27 September 2016

Oracle Open World 2016, Day 3 & 4, social happenings, Essbase Cloud, and Groovy

The Road to Hell

Are paved with such high and alas obviously unrealistic hopes for myself when it comes to live blogging.  I’m not sure if it’s because I’m lazy (‘natch, I am), or if it’s because I tweet so much nonsense and have thus shot my social media bolt, or if I come back to laziness.  I think I pick the first and the third option.

So what am I going to do?

I am not going to bore you with tales of talking with Oracle.  Yeah, yeah, oh Cameron you are so great, blah, blah, blah.  The fact is, Oracle product management hang out by their pods.  And they present.  

You want to meet the VP of Development for Essbase?  Kumar was right there.  You want to talk to Planning/PBCS/EPBCS’ product manager?  Shankar was right there.  Good grief, if I can talk to them, you can too.  I have no lock on talking to people although my father has said multiple times that I kissed the Blarney Stone.  However, loquaciousness as a personality attribute is open to all.  I encourage you to come to Open World just as I encourage you to come to Kscope as well as meetups.  Networking = access = knowledge = sharing = Success!  Boil in Bag!

With that, this post is going to be a mix of the social – networking face to face is the essence of a conference – and cool new product features.  

The Social

As I wrote, product demos and sessions are one half of any conference; the people are the other side of things.  One day all of this will be dust, but the relationships will abide.

ACEDs = geeks

I can no longer remember if this was the Wednesday before the ACED briefings or some time during.  It all begins to blur after a while.  

From left to right, Celvin, Yr. Obt. Svt., MMIC aka Glenn Schwartzberg, John Booth, Eric Helmer, and Tim Tow.  The geekiness (note that I did not write intelligence) emanating from that table was impressive, sort of.


Here’s my younger, smarter, taller brother from a completely different set of parents, Celvin Kattookaran.  Celvin differs from my other brother-from-another-set-of-parents aka Glenn Schwartzberg in that I think Celvin actually likes this not-familial connection.  Or he’s really good at lying.


Meetups are my real passion – lightweight, informal, fun, and grassroots.  The big conferences – Kscope and OOW – are great but the real opportunities to meet people and really make that connection come from the small events.  

Most excellent

Tim Tow and I hosted our fourth annual Tim and Cameron’s Most Excellent EPM Meetup.  It was the best ever this year and we got to look at the dodecahedron sculpture that leant its name to Tim’s flagship Essbase product, Dodeca.

SF Meetup

Two meetups in one week?  Yup.  Here’s Natalie Delemar, ODTUG president, and Jason Jones trying not to laugh at my inept photographic skills.

The meetup took place at SalesForce’s office, a mere 15 minute walk from the Moscone center.

Here’s the meetup panel:  Edward Roske, Tim Tow, Yr, Obt. Svt., and Natalie Delemar.

The same group but now with Michael Zazzera and Frank Chow bracketing us.


The madness that is the Wednesday night event was upon us.  This is not my kind of music but I suppose it’s a bit much to hope for someone of the likes of The Misty Miss Christy.  Right, there is a pretty low chance of that.

I found it telling that there were a thousand geeks recording Gwen Stefani but no so many with Sting.  Age of fans?  Relative popularity?  Beats me, cf. my taste in music.  

The food was immeasurably better this year.  Candlestick (I refuse to call it AT&T) Park is a far better venue than Treasure Island.  Whoops, a correction on the park name from Frank Chow:

Have a correction for your post... Candlestick park is a different park which was located near to south San Francisco and already got demolished. AT&T park was originally named as Pacific Bell Park, then later on got renamed to SBC park. Then got rename to AT&T park after AT&T acquired Pacific Bell (SBC).

That seems like a simple explanation.  :)  With that error corrected...

Okay, I’ve covered the social side of things.  Now on to the product demos.


All about Essbase Cloud née EssCS

I was very happy to see this.  I think these are the first extensive public pictures of Essbase Cloud.

Top drawer stuff.

OMG, we’re back to Excel.  App Man never died!

Build it in a spreadsheet, show it in a outline.  There is no need for a connection to the cloud.  Build anywhere.  OMG.

Oracle have really thought this through.  From the outline to the sheet.  And back.  Per ardua ad astra indeed.

Did I mention that Essbase Cloud will dynamically build the “load rule” sheets from a sample outline?

Build it here, build it there, build it anywhere, Essbase chases it everywhere.  I have now set back Anglo-French relations 200 years.  

Write formulas in the editor and write back to the sheet.

Did I mention this is cool?  And this is just the outline editor.  I’m not going to repeat (most of) Tim Tow’s recap on Essbase Cloud – Read The Whole Thing – but I am most excited about a true Java agent (no more cross dim limitations in Hybrid) and the above Excel->Essbase->Excel functionality.  Oh yeah, having it in the cloud is kind of cool, too.

Essbase and Groovy

I’d be remiss in not mentioning this session – Celvin gave an absolutely brilliant presentation on self-modifying Essbase calc scripts (actually Calculation Manager business rules so Essbase but not entirely) via Groovy.  Want to write a focused aggregation?  How about at the row level?  Column level?  Cell level?  Amazing stuff and OMG fast.  There's quite a bit of that OMG on my part but it was that kind of conference.

A few last thoughts

It was a great albeit exhausting conference as OOW always is.

The drumbeat of Cloud, Cloud, Cloud was and is impossible to ignore.  It’s a sea change in computing and at this point is impossible to ignore.  You may not be on the Cloud and perhaps it isn’t a fit for you, yet, but I guarantee that it will be.  Don’t be a King Canute.

Be seeing you.

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