Friday, November 19, 2010

culture shock ;-)

This week's DOAG 2010 conference in Nuremberg finally gave me an opportunity again to visit Germany after not having been there in a few years, and to present to a very engaged local APEX community in my native tongue. I think the conference was a great success and I was excited to see how many APEX sessions were scheduled this week - and it seems all the APEX sessions drew large audiences. I think Patrick Wolfs's and my sessions had about a hundred participants, close to capacity of the rooms. And Carsten Czarski had managed to hook us up with an additional session in the Demo Kino, so I ended up speaking for about three hours straight on Tuesday. I had a few customers come up to my podium after my presentations, thanking me for the information on APEX 4 and my demos and after they had seen on the schedule that I'm from New York, congratulating me on my excellent German skills. Of course they were less impressed, after I revealed to them that I had actually grown up in Germany.

I also really enjoyed the DOAG party Wednesday night. I was having dinner with Todd Trichler, Kuassi Mensah and Tom Kyte. The event organizers had setup a great buffet, live music and very neatly arranged tables. And each table had very attentive waitresses, who took good care of us. A few minutes into the dinner Bryn Llewellyn stopped by, and someone in my group suggested we could move a little and Bryn could pull over a chair from a neighboring table - which he promptly did. You should have seen the look on the face of one of our waitresses, she appeared to be in complete shock and disbelieve that someone would dare break the order of the tables and chairs. And just as I was making a joke to Todd, explaining some of the cultural differences, Steven Feuerstein stopped by, grabbed a chair from a neighboring table as well and unfortunately for him, took a chair from the VIP table were Oracle Germany's top management was having dinner. That of course was too much for the poor waitress, who promptly moved the chair back into it's proper position. Thankfully one of the DOAG officials became aware of the situation and personally setup a chair, plates and silverware for Steven on our table and we got to enjoy the rest of our dinner. Here's a photo taken by Markus Eisele (

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