AT ORACLE: In the Field
Users Find Their WayBy Mike Riley
Whatever your interest, there’s a user group out there for you.
As this is my last Oracle Magazine column as president of Oracle Development Tools User Group (ODTUG), I thought I’d look back at one pivotal moment from the past five years, what it has meant to the user group community, and what I learned from the experience.
April 2007: Oracle acquired Hyperion Solutions Corporation.
Oracle added Hyperion’s industry-leading enterprise performance management solutions to its portfolio and Hyperion’s customers to the Oracle customer community. The Oracle and Hyperion user group communities were also affected by the acquisition. Where would Hyperion users align themselves?
Many user group organizations reached out, in different ways, to the Hyperion user community. ODTUG, for example, reached out to influential independent leaders within the Hyperion community to help form an in-depth track at our annual ODTUG Kaleidoscope (now known as Kscope) conference. The track first surfaced at ODTUG Kaleidoscope 2008, held in New Orleans, Louisiana, that year, and was by all accounts a critical success. The Oracle Hyperion track attracted more than 170 attendees and was strictly focused on Oracle Essbase (formerly Hyperion Essbase).
ODTUG provided the infrastructure and logistics, and the Hyperion community leaders created the agenda, helped to market it, and spread the word. Out of that 2008 conference, Kscope has become known as the home for outstanding content related to Oracle Hyperion solutions. The conference has more Oracle Hyperion presentations than any other conference, includes the largest number of Oracle Hyperion–focused attendees, and attracts prominent vendors. Primarily—but not solely—as a result of this influx of content and attendees, Kscope has experienced significant growth each and every year, starting in 2008 and continuing through Kscope12 this year.
Other organizations also provide Oracle Hyperion content to the educational landscape, such as some of the recent Connection Point conferences, presented by the Oracle Applications Users Group (OAUG), and COLLABORATE, hosted by the Independent Oracle Users Group, OAUG, and Quest International Users Group. With these events and many others, Oracle Hyperion users have taken the time to investigate and determine their best fit within the Oracle user group community. Many have chosen ODTUG as their home; many have chosen other user groups.
What have I learned from the experience? Several things come to mind:
During my tenure as an ODTUG board member, as fast as technology has changed, the user group community has also changed. There is more interaction between the various user groups as we all realize that none of us alone can be a one-stop shop for the entire user community. These changes have been challenging and sometimes painful but ultimately worthwhile—because in the end, all of the user groups are interested in helping you, the user. Sometimes the only thing that seems constant in technology is change.
Mike Riley (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the outgoing president of ODTUG and an Oracle ACE. Riley is a project manager/DBA for Hortica Insurance & Employee Benefits in Edwardsville, Illinois.
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