Monday, September 22, 2008

First impressions: Oracle OpenWorld 2008

I'm at my first Oracle OpenWorld since 1994 this week.  Today was the first day, and I'll share some impressions in this and subsequent posts.

To begin with, some fun with statistics (from a keynote session this morning):

  • There are 43,000 people here for the event, and a total of 1,830 sessions (I think I ran into most of the other attendees tonight at a reception event that offered -- but not for long -- free food).
  • Oracle has 85,000 employees; of those, 20,000 are developers, and one-third came from acquired companies (50 companies acquired during the last five years, for ~$34B). 
  • Oracle invested $3B in R&D during its most recent fiscal year.
  • The company has ~3,000 products.

The only other OpenWorld event I've attended, ~14 years ago, included a last-minute surprise closing keynote, during which Oracle and Lotus Development Corp. unveiled a strategic partnership -- Oracle explained that Lotus was its strategic groupware partner, and Lotus made a strategic commitment to Oracle as its preferred DBMS partner. 

I was on-stage for the closing keynote, working as a Notes product manager at the time, co-presenting a series of demos of how Lotus Notes and Oracle products could be productively used together. 

That's all ancient history now, as the Lotus/Oracle strategic relationship ended abruptly when IBM completed its hostile acquisition of Lotus less than a year later, but it was a fun week, and in many ways, as I'll explain in a separate post, Oracle is only now finally getting its collaboration act together.

Oracle OpenWorld 2008

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