Break New Ground

Oracle Groundbreakers Year End Review 2020

Javed Mohammed
Community Manager

Wow, what a year. I am reminded of the Charles Dickens quote, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”

For me the year started off with some long-distance travel to real events Oracle Open World Middle East, Dubai 2020 with Tania Aggarwal and Oracle Open World Europe, London 2020 along with Linda Bronson and Tania. Just a few weeks after in March we learnt about COVID-19 and our lives changed on a global level and are all grounded. Working in the tech. industry many of us have been fortunate to work remotely and courtesy of Zoom, our work has been transformed.

For me as a member of the Groundbreakers team I have been fortunate to work (and in the past travel with) Jennifer Nicholson who heads up the Oracle Advocacy program with help from Marwa Diaf. Now we found that all our events had gone virtual including, the OUG conferences, the Groundbreaker Tours in the various regions, LAD, EMEA, APAC,  and Developer Live.

At the end of July, our long time Community Manager and colleague Bob Rhubart retired. He was the host and producer of the number one Groundbreakers Podcast. In case you missed it, here is the sign-off with him. Podcast #384: Looking Back: An Interview with Bob Rhubart. Jim Grisanzio and myself have inherited the Podcast as well as Bob's 2 Min Tech Tips and we continue to interview guests at all the virtual events for Groundbreakers Live.

During the lockdown, one of the things I have made a conscious effort to do is to remind folks both personally and professionally of good memories.  I have done this by sharing photos, creating video mashups as well as 60 Second Groundbreaker Stories which you can find on the Oracle Developers Youtube channel. If you have a nice memory, please share it, make someones day.

This brings me to concluding the year. I just wrapped up a Podcast, which will be going out shortly Podcast #388: Combatting COVID-19 with Oracle APEX and Cloud (OCI). In it we get to hear the backstory of how a nationally visible program, Oracle’s COVID-19 Therapeutic Learning System was designed and built in record time. In speaking with the developers who worked on it, I felt a sense of pride that Oracle and its leadership had done another selfless act in the interest of not only our country, but humanity at large. It gives meaning to our work.

Yes 2020 has been a challenging year, it has been painful for many, but there has been much good also that has come through it. I am excited and hopeful about 2021, and will leave you with a quote from Rumi, "There is hope after despair and many suns after darkness."


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