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April 2014

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ODTUG President Monty Latiolais on Planning Ahead for Kscope 14

ODTUG will hold its annual conference, Kscope, in Seattle, Washington, June 22 to June 26. We asked ODTUG President Monty Latiolais for a preview—plus tips on how veteran conference-goers and newcomers alike can make the most of the event.

Q. What makes the Kscope conference special?
A. For me, Kscope has this vibe I don't find anywhere else. It feels more like a family reunion than a world-class tech conference. It's like everyone comes together to solve the industry's issues.

The community service day also makes Kscope special. It's a chance to give back to the city hosting us. This year, we're helping protect and restore the West Duwamish Greenbelt, one of Seattle's most important wildlife habitats.

Q. Are there any changes to the event this year from previous years?
A. Kscope always does a wonderful job of reinventing itself, but this year the conference has really upped its game. We'll have more than 52 Oracle ACES and ACE Directors on site, plus the biggest exhibition hall ever. And for the first time, Thursday will be devoted to two-hour deep-dive sessions—because for some topics, one hour just isn't enough.

Q. Do you have any tips for a first-timer?
A. Don't miss breakfast on Tuesday morning. Sections will be broken out by area of expertise, so attendees can network with others in their field. Then at lunch on Tuesday, attendees should grab a box lunch and join one of the sessions led by a panel of Oracle ACE Directors. Bring your questions—these people have answers.

You can also find great introductory or best practices sessions, such as David Peake on the basics of Oracle Application Express (Wednesday, 10:45 a.m.–11:45 a.m.).

Q. Are there any don't-miss sessions?
A. These days, big data is…BIG. So I'm super excited about our keynote "Can Big Data Save the World?" featuring Jake Porway of DataKind (Monday, 8:30 a.m.). DataKind is a league of extraordinary geeks volunteering their time and talents. They help social organizations tap into the wealth of digital information teeming under the surface of code.

Our all-day Sunday symposiums are a Kscope must-attend—and they're free. This year's topics include Oracle Application Express, Oracle Application Development Framework, Oracle Database, business content, business intelligence, and enterprise performance management.

We're also bringing back our popular "Women in Technology" panel discussion led by Kellyn Pot'Vin (Wednesday, 11:15 a.m.–12:45 p.m.).

Finally, there are some sessions that I wouldn't miss. Two are by Jonathan Lewis: "Designing Efficient SQL" (Wednesday, 8:30 a.m.–9:30 a.m.) and "Developers' Guide to Cost-Based Optimization" (Wednesday, 2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m.). Get a front-row seat and learn from one of the absolute best database administrators on the planet.

I would also carve out some time to see my good friend Cameron Lackpour on the very latest in Oracle Essbase, "Evolution or Revolution—The New Hybrid Oracle Essbase" (Wednesday, 11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m.).

Q. What about social/networking opportunities?
A. Networking opportunities abound at Kscope. Of course, there's Kscope's own community service day on Saturday, followed by the welcome reception on Sunday night. There are nightly happy hours in the exhibition hall, culminating in a truly special event on Wednesday evening at Seattle's amazing Experience Music Project. Bring your business cards, you'll be leaving plenty.

Q. Are there any applications or tools for folks to manage their Kscope experience?
A. Closer to the conference you'll be able to download the Kscope14 mobile app from iTunes and the Android store. Use it to build your schedule, contact other participants, and download presentations.

But you don't have to wait. Keep up with the conversation using #kscope14. Check out presentations and speaker bios, and of course register for the conference.

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