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Welcome to TechWave 2006

'Where Information Management and Information Mobility Intersect'

I went to TechWave a bit early because TeamSybase was holding their reception on Saturday evening. At the reception TeamSybase initiated several new members. If you'd like to view some of the video from the super-secret initiation ceremony, go to www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vq0VbTrjld8.

According to the Newswave, there were 1,600 attendees at TechWave this year. Figure 1 shows this year's TechWave logo. In front of the logo is the backpack that all attendees received when they registered. It's interesting that one of the three sponsor logos on the backpack was Microsoft, however, I didn't see Microsoft represented elsewhere.

Opening Keynote
John Chen in his opening keynote - "The Unwired Enterprise - Where Information Management and Information Mobility Intersect" - thanked ISUG and TeamSybase for being at the show, and then he thanked the event sponsors. He noted that the keynote was being Webcast live and also that members of the board of directors were attending the event and meeting with the customers.

He noted that there are five areas in which Sybase is experiencing growth:

  1. Explosive data growth
  2. Wireless access ubiquity
  3. Proliferation of mobile devices
  4. Demand for real-time information
  5. SOA + mobility development paradigm
John Chen showed the "butterfly slide," which shows the intersection (theme for this event) between information management and information mobility. The key elements for growth are partners and developers, employees, financial strength, R&D innovation, and strategic investments

John Chen also discussed Sybase's acquisitions and how they fit into the long-term plan. Sybase is not involved in acquisitions in the development and modeling areas as they are focused on supporting Eclipse instead.

Test Your IQ Game Show
The game show had a slightly different format this year - two ISUG board members joined with three TeamSybase members to face off against Sybase staff. Rather than having to come up with the answer from scratch, we were allowed to select from a list that contained three to five possible answers. This time the ISUG/TeamSybase team managed to squeak out a win over the Sybase team.

Friends of ISUG Dinner
ISUG had a dinner for "friends," those who have supported ISUG or local user groups over the past year. It was held in the Cafe Lago in Caesar's Palace.

Monday evening, after the sessions, the Exhibit Hall opened for the first time with a sponsor reception. Since they were offering food and drink, it drew many people onto the show floor.

I was originally planning on attending the .NET Interop in PB11 class. However, due to a bit of a snafu, Sybase thought I was an employee and scheduled me to proctor the New Features in PB 10.5 / 11.0 class. It was actually quite encouraging to know that the class was held twice (once prior to this during the pre-conference classes) and yet it was booked to capacity with 100+ people.

Raj Nathan, senior vice president of Sybase's Information Technology Solutions Group, discussed data as the foundation of business, and how that data needed to be unwired from applications so the right data can be delivered to the right point at the right time in his keynote, "The Past, Present and Future of Data Management."

There was another customer panel where Scott Smith (ComScore), Ron Hauper (EMC), Scott Denmark (AOL), and Staffan Skogby (Ericsson) discussed their successes in data management and their needs for the future. There was a discussion about the roadmap for the data management products and Rob V. did a demo of cluster failover.

Mike Harold, ISUG president, and Raj presented the ISUG awards. This year the awards were based on votes from ISUG Journal readers who voted for their favorite articles. In the database category, the award went to Jeff Wallman. In the tools category there were two winners: Ken Howe and Paul Vero.

Bill Jacobs introduced the session, and then Raj discussed the roadmap for tools products. John Strano demonstrated the XAML DataWindow. Dave Dichman discussed plans for PowerDesigner and the latest version was demoed. Jonathan Baker then discussed the plans for Workspace and Jeff Pryslak did a demo of the latest version. Bill then finished the session by noting that Sybase has opened up a blogs section (http://blogs.sybase.com/) where a number of the key people in the database and tools sections are posting.

I was still proctoring the PB 10.5/PB 11 new features class. Unfortunately, the instructor created the PB 11 demo code using a post-beta 1 build of PB11, and the machines in the lab had beta 1 builds, so the lab machines couldn't run the demos. To correct that, the instructor downloaded an even more recent post-beta 1 build, which resulted in the machines failing differently, but failing nonetheless to run the samples. Other than that, the session went well. This issue of demos not going well seems to be a re-occurring theme.

Tuesday's after-lunch dessert was served in the exhibit hall. Once again, it seemed an effective means of ensuring that people visited the exhibit hall. I think it also made the environment more relaxed as well.

More Stories By Bruce Armstrong

Bruce Armstrong is a development lead with Integrated Data Services (www.get-integrated.com). A charter member of TeamSybase, he has been using PowerBuilder since version 1.0.B. He was a contributing author to SYS-CON's PowerBuilder 4.0 Secrets of the Masters and the editor of SAMs' PowerBuilder 9: Advanced Client/Server Development.

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