December 27, 2009

Kaleidoscope - Hyperion/EPM Agenda Approved

Cameron and Gary Beat Me To It
At least two of my fellow ODTUG Hyperion SIG members (and so called "friends") broke the story first
, but allow me to elaborate as the Hyperion/Essbase/EPM content chair on the agenda for ODTUG's Kaleidoscope 2010.

Before I continue, as you've read previously on this blog and others, the only national conference with a major Hyperion presence in 2010 is Kaleidoscope. If you're looking for the best parts of the old Hyperion Solutions conferences, come to Kaleidoscope. Ask anyone who went in 2009 and they'll all agree that it was the best training money they spent all year.

The conference is June 27 to July 1 in Washington DC. Unlike some conferences, the content starts first thing in the morning on Sunday and goes through lunch on Thursday, so make sure you fly in on Saturday and don't fly out until Thursday afternoon or evening.

The opening Sunday in 2010 (like in 2008 and 2009) will be turned over to the Oracle Product Managers to tell us everything that they have planned that hasn't yet been released. This is, for most people, their one opportunity each year to really talk to the people responsible for development to see what's about to be released, what's in beta, and what's a twinkle in the eye of Oracle EPM product management.

The Sunday "Oracle EPM Developer's Symposium" goes well beyond PowerPoint slides. The day is organized by my long-time friend and Oracle Sr. Director, Al Marciante, and he will make sure that see actual product in development.

The day is also designed to be interactive. Part of why the Product Managers are coming is to hear what you think about what they have in mind. For Sunday, all the Hyperion attendees get together in one really large room. Monday through Thursday, the attendees break out into several tracks.

5 Tracks for the Hyperion Attendees
There are five major tracks that you'll find interesting:
  • Essbase. There is an entire track devoted to Essbase content and each day is themed to a different aspect of Essbase. Some of the days include Aggregate Storage (ASO), Essbase Utilities, Essbase Under the Covers, and Advanced Essbase. There will be no conference (including OpenWorld) in 2010 with more Essbase sessions.
  • Hyperion Applications. One of the comments from last year was that there weren't enough presentations on Hyperion Planning and HFM, so this year, we devoted an entire track to them. This track also has sessions on some of the lesser known products like Life Cycle Management, EPM Architect, Hyperion Strategic Finance, Integrated Operational Planning, and FDM. We also devoted time slots to some of the modules that haven't even been released yet (but will by Kaleidoscope 2010) like Disclosure Management and Financial Close.
  • Hyperion Hands-On-Labs. There will be a series of 3+ hour hands-on labs to give you real-world experience in Hyperion. Some of the classes include Essbase Studio and Integrating OBIEE with Essbase. If you learn more by doing than hearing, this is the track to park yourself in. There will be plenty of power outlets, don't worry.
  • BI, DW, and Hyperion Reporting Tools. As we all know, some of our favorite products are being phased out in favor of some OBIEE products like Answers, Dashboards, and Publisher. If you want to learn more about the Oracle Business Intelligence side of things, then this would be the place to find it. For what it's worth, I'm not the content chair for this track, but the awesome Mark Rittman is, so I know it will be good (or I'll eviscerate him on my blog ;-).
  • Hardcore Hyperion. One of the things people liked at previous Kaleidoscopes was the advanced/guru/hardcore content that conferences tended to omit. Even the late/great Hyperion Solutions conference had stopped doing sessions for the true Hyperion expert. We've expanded these "Top Gun" presentations into an entire track in 2010 and it's not just Hardcore Essbase. In addition to Essbase, there are entire days devoted to advanced HFM, Planning, and even Smart View. If you don't go to classes on Hyperion anymore because there's nothing you don't already know for your chosen product, come to this track. It's where I plan on spending most of my time, so pull up a chair next to me. I'm usually in the back row near the power outlets.
Business Users are Welcome Too
The number one request from last year was that add even more Hyperion Planning and Hyperion Financial Management content. Apparently, the Planning and HFM users, developers, and admins were not finding a home at any other conference. We've solved this by adding an entire Hyperion Apps track and also devoting days in the Hardcore Hyperion track (see above).

The other request was for more beginner and intermediate level content. In 2008, we only had Essbase content and it went great (though it did tend to skew to the more advanced users). In 2009, we added some content on the other applications (like Hyperion Planning) but again, we tended to skew to the intermediate to advanced users. Our theory was that beginner and business users would be going to the Collaborate conference.

Well, with the scarcity of Hyperion content at Collaborate 2010, we felt that we had to provide a home to those more functional users (with non-technical backgrounds). To that end, we added beginner, intermediate, business, and functional content to both the Essbase and Hyperion Apps tracks. This way if you miss one of the OAUG EPM Connection conferences (or you want more than 2-days of information), you'll be quite satisfied with Kaleidoscope.

For those of you still wanting the guru content, never fear. We didn't want you to think that we were going all soft, so that's why we spun out or guru-level technical content into its own Hardcore Hyperion track.

See the Agenda Visually
Gary Crisci, President of the ODTUG Hyperion SIG, was kind enough the put the agenda into a Google Doc. Hopefully, Gary will keep this updated so that if speakers don't accept their invites or sessions get added, you'll be able to get an updated agenda.

You should also visit This will not only have the most recent list of accepted presentations, it's also where you'd go to register. They're already accepting registrations if you have some budget money left and only a couple of days left in 2009 to spend it. I'm signed up to deliver either 3 or 4 presentations at Kaleidoscope (mostly in the Hardcore Hyperion track), so I'll definitely see you there.

On a vaguely related note, for those of you who played it at Kaleidscope 2009 and for those of you feeling bad that you missed out, there will be multiple midnight sessions of Werewolf. For what it's worth, my name is Edward Roske and I'm a villager. Gary on the other hand? Obviously a werewolf.

December 22, 2009

Collaborate 2010 - OAUG Presentations

The next Collaborate conference is April 18-22, 2010 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. This is a joint conference of three large Oracle user groups: OAUG, IOUG, and Quest.

There were some people (I was one of them) who were wondering if Collaborate would be the successor to the Hyperion Solutions conference just with a lot of other Oracle products thrown in. The Hyperion attendance fell from 2008 to 2009, so it wasn't surprising when the Collaborate organizers decided to cut the Hyperion/EPM presentations at Collaborate 2010.

While IOUG historically has some Essbase and OBIEE presentations (and in 2009, Quest had a couple of general EPM sessions), the main Oracle EPM/Hyperion/Essbase group at Collaborate is OAUG since they inherited the mantle of the old HUGs (Hyperion User Groups). Everyone was curious as to how many presentations OAUG would allot to Hyperion in 2010.

Looks Like About 35 Sessions from OAUG
Not including the ones from IOUG and Quest (because it's way too hard to figure out from their sites which ones are Oracle EPM specific), OAUG has approximately 35 sessions devoted to Oracle EPM (Hyperion and Essbase). I got this number by going to the OAUG Presentation Search and selecting "Hyperion EPM" (which doesn't make a lot of sense product naming wise, but whatever). It gave me the following list:
  1. "How Workforce Planning and Oracle Data Integrator restored sanity" by AdvancedEPM Consulting, Inc.
  2. "Sub Ledger Accounting in Release 12 Technical Perspective" by AST Corporation
  3. "Creating a Hyperion Planning Solution with Full PeopleSoft Integration in Under 90 days" by Berlin Packaging
  4. "Soaring through Economic Turbulence with Oracle's Strategic Finance and Crystal Ball" by Blue Stone International, LLC
  5. "Product Cost Modeling Using Oracle Business Intelligence and Hyperion Planning" by Calix Networks, Inc.
  6. "Becoming The Cube Whisperer" by Catholic Health Initiatives
  7. "Implementation of Hyperion EPM Systems Integrated to Oracle EBS" by Coherent, Inc.
  8. "Consolidate Oracle EBS, Hyperion EPM and other Apps onto one set of hardware by virtulization" by Cricket Communications
  9. "Integrated Business Planning" by Emerson
  10. "Hyperion Financial Management(HFM): Design Considerations in HFM for External & Management Reporting" by Hess Corporation
  11. "Using the Hyperion Financial Management (HFM) API to Create Custom Solutions" by Interpublic Group of Companies
  12. "Best Practices in Consolidations" by interRel Consulting
  13. "Introduction to Hyperion Financial Management and FDM" by interRel Consulting
  14. "Finding Profitability in 8 Weeks: An Introduction to Hyperion Profitability & Cost Managemen" by interRel Consulting
  15. "Using Essbase Outside of Finance: Challenging Requirements for Performance Accountability" by interRel Consulting
  16. "Oracle Hyperion Smart View For Office New Features & Integration Points" by Kerdock Consulting
  17. "Revenue Planning: When is detail it appropriate and how will it impact my Planning implementation" by Kerdock Consulting
  18. "What's New for Version 11: Hyperion Financial Management" by Kerdock Consulting
  19. "Hyperion Planning for Higher Ed: Business Considerations at Rice University" by Kerdock Consulting
  20. "Advanced Financial Master Data Management with Oracle Hyperion Data Relationship Management" by Key Performance Ideas, Inc.
  21. "Cash Flow Reporting Within Hyperion Financial Management" by Laureate Education Inc
  22. "Leveraging Your Hyperion Investment for Non-Financial Operations" by Linium
  23. "Enterprise to Hyperion Financial Management: Improving efficiencies and reporting at TSYS" by MarketSphere Consulting
  24. "Security in Hyperion Fusion 11" by MindStream Analytics
  25. "Be "Productive Day One and Ensure User Adoption with Oracle User Productivity Kit and Oracle Tutor" by Oracle
  26. "Oracle's Strategy and Roadmap for Oracle's Hyperion Performance Management Applications" by Oracle
  27. "Integrating Risk and Compliance Strategies The Latest in Oracle GRC Applications" by Oracle
  28. "Introduction to Hyperion Enterprise Planning Solutions" by Oracle Corp Inc., Boston
  29. "Integrated Operational Planning - Bridging The Gaps Between Finance, Operations, And Sales" by P3 Solutions
  30. "Key Success Criteria for Oracle Hyperion Planning and Oracle HFM Integration" by Ranzal
  31. "Mission Critical! Implementing Highly Available Global Oracle-Hyperion EPM Installations." by The Hackett Group
  32. "Strategies for Helping Government Agencies Optimize Oracle BI Tools and Processes" by The IRUS Group, Inc.
  33. "Optimally Leverage your Oracle Hyperion Investment" by TUSC
  34. "Essbase Tuning & Optimization at USADrug" by USADrug
  35. "Financial Reconciliation to Reporting (RTR) Town Hall Meeting" by VeriSign Inc
Now the reason I'm saying that there are "about 35 sessions" is that some of the ones listed don't really seem like EPM presentations (like #2, #25, and #35 above). Keep checking because I'm sure they'll reclass everything correctly at some point.

There is a major scarcity of Essbase presentations. There are two that mention Essbase in the title and judging by the abstract, #6 is also an Essbase presentation. That means OAUG will have just 3 Essbase presentations. Of course, you can't really expect all the products to be covered well with only 35 presentation slots.

I also find it really interesting that Oracle was only given 3 presentations and that's 3 if you include #25 above which really isn't related to EPM. That puts interRel in the peculiar spot of having more Oracle EPM presentations than Oracle does. If anyone from Oracle would like to co-present one of the interRel ones with us, send me an e-mail and I'll be happy to split the presenting workload with you.

Should I Bother Going?
It's quite clear that Collaborate is no longer trying to be a national conference for Hyperion. Even once you add in the content from IOUG and Quest, it's clear that Collaborate seems to be aiming to provide just enough Hyperion content so that people going to Collaborate for other products can feel happy if they also own Hyperion. If you are primarily interested in learning about Hyperion, skip Collaborate in 2010 and go to either one of the regional OAUG EPM Connection conferences or the national ODTUG Kaleidoscope conference. It's not worth it to spend between $1,385 and $2,125 on Collaborate for this little content.

Is there any reason to go to Collaborate 2010 if you only care about Hyperion and Oracle EPM? Well, it is in Vegas, and for some of us, that's the only reason we need.

A Word to Hyperion Vendors
And some free advice to Hyperion-centric consulting firms: if your company primarily does Oracle EPM, I'd save the money you were going to spend on a Collaborate booth and exhibit at Kaleidoscope and EPM Connection. There just won't be enough Hyperion attendees to make the ROI worth it to have a major presence at Collaborate. Ignore this advice if you want, but don't complain when the majority of the Hyperion attendees at Collaborate are other Hyperion partners who made the same mistake.

December 19, 2009

EPM Connection New Jersey - Update

This is an update to my posting from last month on the first of the EPM Connection regional conferences (also known by the easy to remember name "OAUG Connection Point - Enterprise Performance Management" regional conferences). It looks like this conference will definitely be

February 23-24, 2010 at the Hyatt Regency
The dates are definite now (there was some slight confusion before). It's definitely Feb. 23-24 in Jersey City, NJ. The host hotel is the Hyatt Regency in Jersey City. Right now, rooms are blocked at the conference rate for $139/night until the room block is filled. To find more about the conference lodging, visit

Educational Content
Some of the sessions are already approved and posted on the EPM Connection website. (No, I'm not one of the pre-approved speakers, Mom.) Here is the presentation list as of December 19, 2009:
  • "Upgrading HFM to Fusion 11.x — Introduction to New Functionality and Upgrade Considerations" by Rob Cybulski from Finit
  • Converting from Hyperion Enterprise to HFM: Design Considerations and Best Practices" by Rob Cybulski from Finit
  • "Global insurer, Marsh and McLennan, moves Long-Range Strategic Plan to Hyperion Strategic Finance from spreadsheet models" by Tom Gibbons from Marsh & McLennan with Hanyul Lee from Bluestone
  • "I Know How to Spell HSF … Now What? The Hyperion Product You Never Realized You Always Needed and Probably Already Own" by Jay Laabs from Bluestone
  • "Oracle EPM 11 system administration — under the covers!" by Eric Helmer from Hackett
  • "Achieving a Common Goal: Creating an Oracle EPM Center of Excellence" by Laura Gregor from Pearson
  • Validating Your Financial Information Using Financial Data Quality Management (FDM)" by Laura Gregor from Pearson
It's interesting to note that of the 7 presentations selected so far, 2 are on HFM, 2 are on HSF, 1 is on FDM, 1 is high-level on EPM, and 1 is very techie-level on EPM. What we don't see are any presentations on Hyperion Planning or Essbase, the two best selling Oracle EPM products. I'm somewhat surprised they didn't preselect any in these categories.

There will eventually be 35+ presentations (not sure if this includes the vendor presentations or not) so I'm guessing this is just a temporary scheduling quirk. The deadline for abstract submission was December 15, and when the rest of the presentations are selected, we'll have a better idea of the product coverage of the conference.

With the exception of Eric's (which really doesn't seem to fit with the above sessions), all of the above also seem to be very introductory presentations. Again, I'm not sure if this is a temporary quirk or if it's the aim of the conference to have more beginner-level content.

We only have 2 months to the conference, and since the schedule's not posted yet, time is rapidly running out for people to determine if they want to go and then register to do so. To help make it easier to get approval in this short time frame, the nice people at OAUG have made the cost of the conference an affordable $495 (if you register by February 16). After that date, the rate goes up to $595 for what is basically an on-site registration rate.

You'll notice that the rate of $495 doesn't go up until a week before the conference. In my opinion, this is bad for the conference organizers, because they really won't have any idea of the expected conference attendance until a week or two before the conference. People will procrastinate until February, because they really don't have any incentive to sign up early.

Because people will be signing up at nearly the last moment, I expect attendance numbers to be minimal until February. Correspondingly, don't be surprised if the conference organizers get spooked when they see those very low pre-enrollment numbers and start doing things like offering discounts. Note that I have no actual knowledge that this will happen (I'm no longer involved with the OAUG Hyperion SIG), it makes logical sense.

If you want to be a kind soul and sign up now to give them a better idea of their conference size, stop procrastinating and visit this link:

More Information
If you want to stay abreast about the conference, bookmark the following link:

They seem to be updating it very regularly. It's actually changed since the beginning of this week, so make sure you check it frequently. Assuming I get a presentation selected, I will be at "EPM Connection NJ," so if you're going, I'll see you there.

November 20, 2009

ODTUG Board - Elections

The elections are over for the ODTUG (Oracle Development Tools User Group) board of directors. Here are the new board members that will be serving in 2010-2011:
They join the carry-over board members who were serving in 2009-2010:
  • John Jeunette
  • Barbara Morris
  • Marc de Oliveira
  • Mike Riley
What the keen eyed among you will immediately notice is that Tim Tow was not re-elected. Apparently, it was a very close election and Tim fell just a couple of votes shy. Oracle EPM fans should not be totally disheartened, though, because Mark Rittman was newly elected. Mark is well known in the EPM/BI community. He will do a fine job representing the EPM/BI/Hyperion needs on the board. I've known Mark for a couple of years and I can vouch that he's a decent human being. (I refuse to be friends with anyone who kicks puppies or kittens. Well, okay, I'll be friends with them on Facebook but not IRL. Point is, Mark doesn't kick any small mammals.)

Tim Tow will serve out the rest of his term through December of this year. I know I speak for not only myself but the entire Hyperion community when I say, thank you, Tim, for all the hard work you've put into ODTUG. Hyperion developers, administrators, and users finally have a place to call home again, and it was your tireless service that helped get us there. Sincerely, we appreciate it.

If you want to say thank you to Tim as well, nothing says you appreciate his service like buying a copy of Dodeca from AppliedOLAP.

November 15, 2009

Regional EPM Connection Conferences - Update

OAUG Connection Point - Enterprise Performance Management
Back on October 30, I wrote about what little information I had on the upcoming regional OAUG conferences on Hyperion and EPM. The name that OAUG is giving to these conferences is way too long and way too hard to remember, so I'm going to start calling them "EPM Connection" conferences. If OAUG doesn't like it, they should come up with a shorter, catchier, more marketable name (like Dimensions, Solutions, Collaborate, Kaleidoscope, or OpenWorld).

I have some new information to impart compliments of the OAUG eNews from November (scroll way to the bottom):

Date Change: February 22-23
Contrary to earlier information that put the dates slightly later, the conference is now going to be held on Monday and Tuesday (Feb. 22-23) in Jersey City, NJ.

Tracks Revealed
There are going to be 5 tracks at the first EPM Connection conference:
  • Budget, Forecasting & Planning
  • Financial Consolidations & Reporting
  • Business Intelligence & Analytics
  • The Office of the CFO
  • EPM Product Roadmap
The non-product orientation of the tracks seems to imply that this will be more of a business-oriented rather than technical conference. Considering that this is put on by OAUG, we sort of expected that though. To drive this point home, OAUG had this to say about their desired audience:
This event is ideal for accounting and finance professionals of all experience levels, internal audit staff with a focus on external and compliance reporting areas, and IT professionals who need to understand what the accounting and finance groups need to achieve.
I don't like how EPM is getting pigeonholed as only applicable to finance/accounting types, but you can't win 'em all.

More Information
OAUG is telling people that more information will be coming soon to this website:

At the moment, there is less at that link than I just discussed in this blog posting, but I'm sure more will be posted soon since EPM Connection is now just 3 months away. They'd better hurry with their call for papers (if they're even going to have one).

November 12, 2009

Acquisition of Hyperion Consulting Partners Continues

Back in January, I wrote a blog posting about all the Hyperion consulting firms that got gobbled up in 2008. I fearlessly predicted more acquisitions in 2009... and there were none of note for over 9 months. The last month has seen two acquisitions.

October 16: Prithvi Buys Percentix
Prithvi Information Solutions bought Southern California-based Percentix on October 16. If you're outside of SoCal or Colorado, you may have never heard of Percentix. They only had 10-20 employees, but they were developing a reputation out West. Prithvi, a major India-based IT services firm with sales in excess of $250 million, bought Percentix for an undisclosed amount.

This was definitely a stealth purchase. There were no press releases that I could find and Percentix's own website doesn't even mention that they were acquired. The only place I could find it mentioned officially was on LinkedIn. Look in the top-right corner for the new "Parent Company" information:

Why would a $250MM company bother buying a company with 10+ employees? I honestly have no idea. Feel free to speculate in the comments.

November 10: Hackett Buys Archstone
Per Archstone, Archstone has been implementing Hyperion since at least 2004. I first ran into them at Solutions 2007 at a presentation they were giving with CVS (I think), but their website claims they have a significant number of HFM and Planning implementations dating back 5+ years. Archstone even has a press release on their website saying that they were Hyperion's "Partner of the Year" in 2007, but since the press release also says that Hyperion is based out of the Netherlands, I don't put a ton of faith in it:

What's definite is that Archstone is a well-known player in the Hyperion space that's fallen on hard times as of late. At their peak in 2007, they had over 250 employees and revenue of close to $70MM. Now Archstone is around 130 consultants with revenues of about $35-40MM per Hackett's press release on the acquisition.

There are two very interesting things about this acquisition. First, Archstone didn't get very much for their company. It seems to be an all stock deal valued (depending on who you talk to) between $13.5 and $23MM. That's about 50% of one year's revenue which is what we in the USA call a "fire sale." Considering that EPM is a hot place to be right now, Hackett seems to have gotten an amazing deal.

What really puzzles me is that I can't believe Hackett is in a position to buy anyone at the moment. The same day that they announced the Archstone acquisition, they also announced that they missed their earnings and revenue expectations for Q3. Revenue was off 33% from a year earlier and net income was down over 80%. Further, Hackett forecasted a weak fourth quarter. Hackett stock (NASDAQ: HCKT) was at $3.76/share on Tuesday. At the time of this writing, Hackett stock is below $3.00/share. In other words, this doesn't seem like a good time for Hackett to be buying anybody. Get your house in order before you decide to take on someone else's housecleaning too.

What's Next
A lot of the acquisitions in 2008 were by companies looking to acquire an EPM partner to get into new customers. Neither of the acquisitions above seems to fit that mold. This begs the question: are there other Hyperion partners out there that are hurting? Considering that the EPM space is doing quite well, while there may be one or two more troubled firms out there, I just don't see a lot more fire sale type deals anytime soon.

However, I do still foresee more acquisitions in the next few months. As for who will be acquired, I'll quote my own posting from January:
...there aren't a ton of pure-EPM partners left. One could speculate that it might be interRel, PII, Kerdock, Global Analytics, US-Analytics, Analytic Vision, HCG, TopDown, or even the Hyperion arm of Palladium, but it could just as likely be some other tiny Hyperion vendor that's not on anyone's radar screen right now.
Well, Percentix definitely fell into the "tiny Hyperion vendor" category, but I would still look to one of those companies (other than interRel) I listed in January to be acquired next. Personally, I hope that either Global Analytics, US-Analytics, Analytic Vision, or Analytica (out of the UK) get bought simply because the Hyperion world could use fewer consulting companies with "analytic" in their names. Next time, try to be a little more creative, people.

October 30, 2009

Collaborate Regional Conferences - First is Feb. 23-24 in NJ

OAUG Connection Point - EPM Regional Conferences
There is apparently a name for the 3 regional 2-day conferences on Hyperion/EPM/BI that OAUG is putting on in 2010. It's "Oracle Connection Point - Enterprise Performance Management" regional conferences. The first one of these (per Kerdock Consulting's blog) is going to be held February 23-24, 2010 in Jersey City, NJ at the Grand Hyatt.

I don't know any details yet on when the call for speakers is going out nor when they'll have more details on vendor information. As soon as I know it, I'll do an update. It can't be far off, because the conference is less than 4 months away.

There are supposed to be 2 more of these regional conferences in 2010, but I have no details at present on where or when these will be. I get the impression that OAUG is waiting to see how well the first one goes before making a commitment to the others.

October 28, 2009

Kaleidoscope Speaker Submission Extended to November 10

ODTUG Kaleidoscope is, as mentioned previously, the main national Hyperion/EPM conference for 2010. It will have content for all types of users on Essbase, Hyperion Planning, HFM, the Hyperion & OBIEE reporting tools, and more. There are 4 tracks entirely devoted to Hyperion & Essbase and as this the replacement (at least in 2010) for the old Hyperion Solutions conference, you'll definitely want to be there.

So since you're going, let's get you a free pass if we can. The easiest way to get a pass to K'Scope is to speak at the conference. Though the original deadline was October 27, they've just extended the deadline to November 10. Visit if you want to submit something by the 10th. The two tracks that could use more submissions are the Essbase and Hardcore Hyperion areas but also feel free to submit more in the Hyperion Applications and Hyperion Reporting Tools tracks as well.

While K'Scope is still looking for the advanced/guru/expert content they've offered in the past, this year they've expanded their tracks to have enough rooms to also have some more introductory and intermediate content. So if you want to present on something at a beginning level like a case study or success story of Hyperion or EPM at your company, please feel free. There will be room for all levels at K'Scope 2010. I hope to see you there even if you're not accepted as a speaker.

October 19, 2009

2010 Conferences - Speaker Deadlines Coming Up

If you want to be a speaker at either Kaleidoscope or Collaborate in 2010, the deadlines for submitting session topics for consideration are almost up. I know, it seems way too early to me too, but I guess Collaborate is only 6 months away.

Like most conferences, Collab & K'Scope will give a free pass to the conference to any accepted speaker. This makes it a lot easier to convince your boss to send you since these national conferences usually run upwards of $2,000 USD per person.

OAUG/IOUG/Quest Collaborate: Deadline is October 20
Collaborate will be held April 18-22, 2010 in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay. Yes, the deadline is tomorrow. Don't feel bad if you don't have time to get a paper together. Word on the street has it that OAUG (the main driver of Hyperion and Oracle EPM content at Collaborate) has reduced the number of Hyperion presentations to only 30. So not only are the odds of getting one of the slots pretty slim, most Hyperion attendees will be avoiding Collaborate in 2010 in favor of one of OAUG's regional Hyperion conferences (which will have more content than the national one anyway).

There are two good reasons to go to Collaborate: either you like gambling in Vegas (and face it, who doesn't?) or you're going for non-Hyperion content too. If you are going, you might as well get a free pass, so submit a presentation and hopefully get a free pass. The track you'll want to submit under is "BI/Data Warehousing/EPM":

The call for papers for the regional conferences isn't out yet, but I'll blog it when it's announced.

ODTUG Kaleidoscope: Deadline is October 27
Kaleidoscope will be held June 27-July 1, 2010 in Washington DC at the Marriott Wardman Park. As I mentioned in an earlier post, this is the national conference you'll want to be attending in 2010 (and I'm not just saying that because I'm the Essbase/Hyperion Content Leader for Kaleidoscope '10). The call for speakers for Kaleidoscope has been going on since the end of September, but the deadline for submitting your abstract is Tuesday of next week.

There are 4 topic areas with Hyperion and Oracle EPM content in them at Kaleidoscope:
  • Essbase. Looking for Essbase content? Whether you’re a developer or an administrator, a novice or a guru, this track will is your home for Essbase information in all forms. Whether it’s sessions on tips and tricks, optimization, Essbase ASO, calc scripts, workarounds, Essbase success stories or Essbase esoteric, the “Essbase track” is your Essbase home.
  • Hyperion Applications. Hyperion Planning, Hyperion Financial Management, Hyperion Profitability and Cost Management, Hyperion Strategic Finance and the rest of the Oracle EPM (formerly Hyperion) packaged applications are found in the “Hyperion Applications” track. Everything from case studies in implementing specific applications up through tips, tricks, and best practices for developing, administering, or using the Hyperion applications will be covered here.
  • Oracle Business Intelligence & Hyperion Reporting Tools. The Hyperion community is used to Financial Reporting, Web Analysis, Interactive Reporting, SQR Production Reporting, Smart View, and Workspace. The Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition developers have been using OBIEE Answers, Dashboards, Publisher, Delivers, Business Indicators, and the OBI Server. Oracle is bringing these products together, so we’re merging the content. Whether you’ve been doing OBIEE or Hyperion front-end development, this track will show you the future of Oracle’s combined reporting technologies.
  • Hardcore Hyperion. If you’re looking for case studies, then this is not the track for you. You’ve asked for even more advanced, guru, hardcore, expert, “Top Gun” Hyperion content, and your wishes have been answered. The “Hacking Hyperion” track is your home for content that you won’t find anywhere else the entire year. If you have secret optimizations, ideas for modifying underlying tables and source code, tuning tips that you haven’t heard anywhere else, or any other content that would tickle the fancy of a seasoned Essbase, Hyperion Planning, HFM, or other Hyperion app developer, then join us as we enter the undocumented (and probably unsupported) world of Hyperion.
If you want to speak at Kaleidoscope, visit:

October 15, 2009

You don't need to go to Oracle World ever again and death to SAP!

Usually, you schedule out your trip and haul a bunch of stuff across the country and cope with jet lag, an unfamiliar bed, continental breakfasts and long lines to everything from registration to shuttles. You spend 3-5 days traveling, scheduling and sitting in sessions.  Typically you walk what seems to your unsuspecting arches and heels hundreds of miles and sleep little either due to what you picked up probably on the airplane over or from being hosted by eager sales reps hoping to influence you into agreeing to the next big sale for the next quarter.  Inevitably there is a moment one morning where you wake up and realize you are not sure what city you are in but you are sure you had a few drinks too many last night. Finally, when all this is done and over you need to get back into the rat race and likely are expected to deliver a report over what happened and catch up on all the work you missed while you were gone.

Well now there is a solution; Oracle OpenWorld Live!
Actually, Oracle has really embraced social networking and messaging technology in an unprecedented way.
You can live stream a video feed and watch sessions from any decent internet connection.  You can Tweet with attendees and fans about the feed and other events.  You can even join a Facebook group for Oracle open World fans. Not to mention integration and links with Linkedin, YouTube, OracleMix and RSS feeds.

After the show, popular presentations can be viewed by attendees by simpy logging back into the Oracle Open World site and for those that could not attend, they can access the presentations for a small fee and receive full access to all the recorded presentations.

So why attend the conference at all? Well, the truth is that there are still many reasons to continue attending the show in person, but for those of us that can't.  This is much better than waiting another year or getting second hand stories of what happened from your peers and reading Blogs.  There is still no technology that replaces the human need to connect completely.  This is pretty close though and definitely effective.  I plan to go back and sit in on the sessions I missed and a few that I liked to make sure my notes are complete and accurate.

A sign of what is to come with more and more conferences and such.  I promise, I'll still be there even when it's considered "old school" to attend in person when at Oracle Open World 2025, Larry announces Oracle's latest acquisitions. Quite possibly something like the Moon itself or Air.  We will all cheer since everyone attending will be an Oracle employee anyway and drinking Kool-Aid will be encouraged since it's an Oracle product. This will be announced as the final death blow to SAP by finally executing their strategy and refusing to Post Optionssupply Air to SAP and it's users and not allowing them to flee to the moon since we own it too.  Check mate SAP in 2025.

October 12, 2009

Oracle Announces Availability of EPM - Two Months After It's Released

It must have been a slow news day at OpenWorld for Oracle EPM. Though was released on August 6 and I blogged about the new features a month ago, Oracle decided to put out a press release on the new functionality on October 12. Well, better late than never.

If you want to see Oracle's comments on what's new in and a brief discussion of the new HFM Financial Close module they're developing, visit here:

In related news, I heard that tomorrow Oracle will be announcing the release of a brand-new product called Essbase (pronounced S-base) that's supposed to be some sort of "multi-dimensional database." I guess it's been in beta since 1992. Multi-dimensional databases? Could these be the next big thing? Discuss in the comments.

interRel Repeats as EPM & BI Partner of the Year

Wow, back-to-back wins. I am seriously stunned. Earlier this evening in Moscone South at the Oracle Partner Network Titan Awards, interRel won the award for "EPM & BI Solution" of the year.

Last year at Openworld was the first time they've given this award out and we were honored (and surprised, frankly) to win it then. We had zero expectation at interRel of being able to repeat as winners. Don't get me wrong: we do consistently good Hyperion and Oracle EPM implementations at interRel, but the odds of repeating seemed astronomically stacked against us. I didn't even know if you could or if Oracle liked to spread the wealth around to multiple partners.

This year, so we were told, the competition for this award was far more fierce than in 2008. We are ecstatic to have won it again making us the only company ever to have received the EPM Solution of the Year award. I am so amazingly happy right now that it's difficult to put into words. We're putting a press release together that should come out this morning.

UPDATE:Press Release has been rapidly assembled (good job staying up all night, Danielle):

October 11, 2009

Just Released - Look Smarter with Oracle Hyperion Planning: End User Guide

Planning End User Guide
In case anyone missed the press release, Tracy McMullen (Best.Coauthor.Ever.) and I released our newest book today. "Look Smarter Than You Are with Oracle Hyperion Planning: End User's Guide" came out this morning with a retail price of $29.95. If you're at OpenWorld, you can pick up a copy at the interRel kiosk in the Hyperion Pavilion at the Intercontinental Hotel. If you're off site,go to our publisher for a copy at

If you've been waiting for this book to come out so you can buy copies for your entire user community, e-mail Danielle White, dwhite(at) She can arrange a bulk purchase for 30% off retail.

What's In The Book
We cover both the web and Smart View interfaces to Hyperion Planning. The screenshots are all from 11.1.1, but the book is usable by anyone on System 9 or 11x. The format of the book is a bit...different than your normal user manual. Here's the opening paragraph of the book:
Let’s face it: computer books are boring. So to make your job learning how to be an end user of Oracle Hyperion Planning a bit more interesting, we’ve decided to weave a musical comedy throughout this book. Bear with us, because we assure you that this will be far more entertaining than it sounds at the moment; however, if musicals “just aren’t your thing”, you can skip through the few scattered musical interludes and go straight for the Planning content. Don’t complain to us when it’s boring, though.
That's right: the world's first musical computer book. Yes, we're quirky. If you want the details of what's in the book, here's the complete table of contents:

  • A SEQUEL 2
  • BIG NEWS 3
  • EPILOGUE 189
  • SET UP 191
  • FINAL SONG 204
Planning Admin Guide
Originally, we were going to simultaneously release the Planning Admin and End User guides when Planning 11.1.2 came out some time in 2009. Now that the release date for 11.1.2 has slipped until February 2010 (or later), we've decided not to wait for it to release the End User guide. The goal for the Admin guide is to get it out sometime in the next 3 months. Publishing dates are notoriously fickle things, though, so keep watching here for updates on release dates.