Ooh! I’m going to OOW!

Just like every DBA, next week I’ll be at the Oracle Open World convention up in San Francisco.

Unlike most DBAs, I’m much more anxious about it. Well, its my first time in a convention of any sort, so I’m having a difficult time choosing between all the events – with so many presentations, keynotes, unconference meetings, no slide talks, and parties, I’ve no idea what I should be doing and where to turn my attention. I’d say that I feel like a kid in a candy store, but this is so much more intense.

What’s more, there are a bunch of people I’d like to meet – bloggers that I like reading, and the nice people who read my blog. I’ve no idea how to go about it, though. There are supposed to be some 50,000 people at the conference, and I have about 10 readers, so that totally rules out random meetings. Arranging a meeting seems a bit pretentious though. But I’m more worried about meeting the bloggers that I love reading. I mean, I can probably go up to Kevin Closson after his lecture and tell him that I love his blog, but isn’t it a bit too much of a fan boy thing?

And then there is the network thing. Everyone is telling me that the most important part in the conference is networking. Thats great, but I’ve no clue how to go about it. Should I keep talking to random people and give them my business card, or is there more scientific approach to it?

Worrying all the time and over planning everything are great traits for a production DBA. But few days before my first conference, I wish I could have been a bit more like that developer I’m working with, the one who didn’t register to any session and is planning to just show up one morning and wing it. Conferences really shouldn’t be so damn complicated.

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4 Comments on “Ooh! I’m going to OOW!”

  1. APC says:

    Don’t talk to people at random but try to find events where (1) conversation is encouraged and (2) you’re likely to find people who you would want to talk to. I discussed this in my blog on Weds.

    One thing you really must do is come along to the Bloggers’ meetup on Tuesday evening. That’s definitely the best way to meet people you might have heard of (and vice versa).

    http://www.rittmanmead.com/2007/10/16/oow-2007-blogger-meetup-thirsty-bear-tuesday-13th-nov-7pm/

    Cheers, APC

  2. [...] Chan Shapira’s excited about OOW. On I’m just a simple DBA…, she writes, Ooh! I’m going to OOW! [...]

  3. Based upon my huge expertise (you can laugh now) as a third-time Oracle OpenWorld attendee, I’ll throw in a few thoughts.

    I went ahead and scheduled a bunch of stuff in the Schedule Builder, but I’m reserving the right to throw those plans out if something else comes along – for example, I’m getting together with a couple of people from Oracle on Sunday night, and of course I’m going to the blogger dinner (first time I’ve been able to attend – looking forward to it!).

    Depending upon your employer, you may get invitations to other events, and you should take advantage of them if they come your way. Right now I’m trying to decide between the OTN event on Monday night, and another event to which I’ve been invited. Not sure what I’ll do yet.

    You may want to pre-contact some people before you get to OpenWorld, either via their blogs, via e-mail, or via OpenWorld Connect.

    I’m a marketing person rather than a technical person, but still this doesn’t come naturally to me either. Just try to take advantage of whatever opportunities may transpire.

  4. [...] Last year I was extremely nervous about attending – It was my first time at a conference ever. This year I feel like a veteran. I recognize many of the speakers, some are almost friends (even if we never met). I have a much better feel toward which sessions are worthwhile and which are a waste of time. I’m preparing lists of annoying questions to ask at the demo grounds (Single best feature of OpenWorld which I didn’t use nearly enough last year). I know that when I’ll sit down in OTN lounge, I’ll recognize few faces. Meet friends. Get to talk to smart people who are just as passionate as I am about Oracle. I’m planning to give an unconference session, streams live demo is itching my fingertips waiting to get out. Writing this here is of course a way to keep me from chickening out like I did last year. [...]


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