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Welcome to the Podcast Directory

This podcast directory provides handy previews, in text format, of all the podcasts available for download at There are also video podcasts in the SAP Blog section. Note: The JonERP iTunes feed is currently the most complete audio feed of all new audio content, as Jon posts audio of his video podcasts and hangouts in that feed also. If you're a video fan you'll want to track also.
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SAP Podcast: Jon Reed on SAP TechEd '07 Days 1-3 Print E-mail

Podcast Recording Dates: October 1-3, 2007
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This is Jon Reed's "roaming podcast" from SAP TechEd '07, Days 1-3. Start out with Jon on Community Day, follow him through his frank reactions to the keynotes and press conferences, and get his quick reactions to the closed interview sessions Jon conducted, such as his group interview with SAP CTO Vishal Sikka.

As always, Jon tries to not only identify the key technical trends, but to move the conversation into the question of skills - who will fill these new SAP roles, and what types of backgrounds will they need? Jon asked SAP executives these questions. Listen to the podcast series to find out the answers he was given and what he thought of those answers.

In these three podcasts (one per day from October 1-3, 2007), Jon provides his complete, unscripted reactions to the sights, sounds, and buzzwords of TechEd '07. (note that this podcast description covers the first three podcasts in the TechEd series - the fourth podcast in this series, Jon's TechEd '07 Day 4 Conference Wrap, has its own podcast description).

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to get free access to all four days of Jon's "from the exhibition floor" TechEd podcast series, you should register with Members who are logged in can download all four of Jon's TechEd '07 podcasts here.

For the Day 1 podcast, Jon gives his take on "Community Day" as well as his reaction to the guest keynote by Web 2.0 superhero Tim O' Reilly. 

Topics in the day one podcast include:

- Jon's reaction to the Community Day session on "eSOA in Action." Jon talks about the different groups of SAP customers and their different reactions to the eSOA material. He also notes the new eSOA skills certifications SAP will be providing in the areas of Business Expert, Technical Expert, Developer, and Enterprise Architect.

- The general reaction to O'Reilly's keynote and the impact of Web 2.0 on the SAP world. Jon talks about how SAP has responded to Web 2.0 by creating "communities of innovation." He also explains O'Reilly's view that companies who don't get on board with Web 2.0 are going to be left behind. The importance of business intelligence and data as an asset and a "barrier to entry" are also covered.

For the Day 2 podcast, the longest day of TechEd and the longest podcast in the series, Jon reacts to the executive keynotes and closed interview sessions he attended.

Editor's note: In the Day 2 podcast, Jon expresses some confusion that some attendees had about SAP Business By Design (BBD) and whether it was replacing A1S or was a separate product. It was later confirmed that BBD is in fact the same product as A1S, which is known as BBD going forward.


Reactions to Day 2 include:

- Responses to the keynote by Peter Zencke and friends, including the surprising emphasis on BBD as a big news item of the day.

- Jon talks about how this whole idea of "business network transformation" is really the same "extending the enterprise" talk SAP vendors have been pushing since the '90s, but that eSOA may finally give some technical teeth to the vision.

- Jon covers the latest SAP product innovations pushed during the keynote, including the SAP switch framework, the ES Workplace on SDN, and the ESR (Enterprise Services Repository). He also talks about the modeling tools that were demonstrated and the potential impact of the new Visual Composer, the new CE (Composition Environment), and the Eclipse development environment. Jon also notes the surprising lack of BI talk during the keynote, except for the BI Accelerator.

- Jon shares his reaction to the press conference after the keynote, where he posed the question of how the skills gap acknowledged by Peter Zencke was going to be filled. The executives on the panel noted an immediate demand for SAP Enterprise Architects and Business Process Experts. Jon gives his take on what he thought of these answers.

- Peter Zencke talked about how SAP customers are using SDN for training, and Jon notes the emphasis SAP is giving on training that goes beyond the classroom.

- Fresh back from his interview session with SAP CTO Vishal Sikka, Jon shares Vishal's take on SAP as a development platform, and whether he thinks ABAP is dead. Jon explains why Vishal thinks core functional and technical SAP skills will become commoditized. He shares Vishal's memorable quote on eSOA: "eSOA is a way to explain to management what APIs are." (Vishal was basically noting the eSOA simplifies the integration discussion in a way that management can understand and appreciate as a business case. Jon also talks about Vishal's point that "service-enabling" the entire SAP product line is a complex undertaking. For example, the Financials area of SAP is a high-stakes area that can get an executive in a jail cell if the right regulatory and compliance procedures (SAP GRC) are not followed. Jon explains why Vishal still believes in the power of eSOA despite these security challenges.

- Jon wraps the Day 2 podcast with reflections on a presentation from Cardinal Health on hands-on SAP eSOA lessons. Jon notes that the speaker, Brent Stutz of Cardinal Health, makes a good summary of "lessons learned" from eSOA, including doing the work of defining who owns the data. Jon also notes the point made during the session that SAP developed its Enterprise Services roadmap by taking the TOGAF industry standard SOA roadmap and adding some business processes to it.

Day 3 of the podcast series is Jon's review of his attempts to get SAP product reps on the same page with the exact release dates of NetWeaver 7.1 and what functionality will be included in each incarnation. Jon found more mixed messages than agreement, but he was able to learn some information about the upcoming NetWeaver 7.1 components (PI, ESR, CE) and what their release dates are likely to be. He also asked a lot of questions about the future of ABAP, and found out the ABAP is indeed included in a number of NetWeaver components, and so is far from dead.

Jon talks about the innovations he encountered on Day 3 in the NetWeaver BI space, including the integration of Web 2.0 mashups using SAP BI and best-of-breed content providers. Jon shares some of the tools needed to do this work that might be worth adding to the skill set including MDX and the BI XMLA connector. He also talks about the power of Visual Composer as proven in the hands-on demonstrations he attended in this area.

Fresh off an evening at a hosted bar event where the best conversations always happen, Jon shares what he learned from the SAP customers at the event about where they were at with their implementations and whether they viewed eSOA as real or hype. Jon talked about the kinds of skills these companies are hiring, how much they train internally and the challenges they face hiring consultants on the open market.

Towards the end of the Day 3 wrap, Jon explains his new belief that there are really three types of SAP customers right now: eSOA leaders, eSOA followers, and those who could care less. Jon talks about the challenges a market faces when customers have such different needs.

Editor's note: see the podcast description for TechEd Day 4 here.

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