A Golden Gate to an Open World, Part 1

Sowing the Seeds of Success

oracle5.1b.jpgRemember what you were doing way back in 1986? Swaying to We Are the World? Recording episodes of The Cosby Show on your Betamax? Arguing about whether David Lee Roth was better than Sammy Hagar? Or perhaps you were part of a group of devoted Oracle users, creating what has become San Francisco’s premier technology event.

Oracle hosted almost 500 devotees at the first International Oracle Users Week (IOUW) in the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco in 1986. Here, attendees saw early forays into the design of flexible software and the clustering technology of Oracle Database Version 5.1. Overwhelming enthusiasm for this first San Francisco conference led to the creation of what is now known as the Independent Oracle Users Group (IOUG)—and charted a course leading to Oracle OpenWorld.

Back then, information was just becoming portable. IBM had recently introduced the first laptop computer, the PC Convertible, and Mark Crispin revealed the Internet Mail Access Protocol (IMAP). These innovations allowed employees to share information from anywhere. The IOUG and Oracle saw an opportunity in the demand to connect employees enterprisewide, and decided to present subsequent IOUW conferences jointly, watching attendance grow steadily.

In 1996, Oracle decided to take control of the Oracle users’ conference beginning with the 1997 event, scheduled for San Francisco. Oracle OpenWorld was born.

Part 2: Reaching Out—Over the Web

Comments:

Over the years, Oracle Openworld has grown into a mega event. It would be interesting to read how the logistics of such an event is planned. For example, for the 1500+ sessions what software is used to schedule them. Is planning for Openworld a year long project? Is there a single project manager or multiple organization teams? How many countries are represented in Openworld? Kudos to the Openworld team for this wonderful blog communicating the buildup to the conference

Posted by Mohan Dutt on August 11, 2008 at 06:07 PM PDT #

Hi Mohan, The answers to your questions would make a very interesting post ... I'll see what information I can dig up. In the meantime, I can say that Oracle OpenWorld is definitely a year-round project involving many teams working together. As our VP of Events Marketing commented earlier in this blog "... We spend 10s of millions of $ on the conference, but the most significant investment is really the people resources, not only Oracle's, but our partners as well. If we could equate it in man-hours (or woman-hours :-) it would exceed 300,000 hours just from set-up to tear-down. And there are a lot of hours that go into it before we even get on-site." We gathered this demographic information from last year's postconference survey. I hope to be able to provide better answers soon, and we're going to try to make stats and feedback more available after this year's conference. Many thanks for your questions and your kudos! It's great to know the blog is appreciated.

Posted by Jack Flynn on August 14, 2008 at 02:01 AM PDT #

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