SAP to acquire Sybase

SAP today announced that it was acquiring database vendor Sybase for $5.8bn in cash.

Sybase, founded in 1984, is famous for developing the original SQL Server source code and signed a deal with Microsoft to share the source code. The two companies went different ways some years later, and started developing their own versions of the source code.

More recently Sybase gambled on a move into the enterprise mobile space, and this may be the key reason for SAP’s interest in the company.

With a heavy financial services Sybase user base, SAP is now able to integrate its enterprise class applications to an increasingly mobile workforce. The avalanche of mobile devices like the iPad, iPhone, Blackberry and Windows Mobile devices, is a clear sign that Enterprise is moving into this area.


SAP World Tour 2009

SAP Business Objects are hosting their World Tour at locations throughout the world over the coming months. Under the banner of the SAP World Tour 2009, the UK presentation will be held at the NEC Centre in Birmingham UK on July 15th.

There are the usual keynote presentations as well as several breakout sessions – one stream focusing solely on Business Intelligence (listed below):

11.30 – 12.15
SAP BusinessObjects: Optimizing Business Performance
Mike Morini, SAP

12.15 – 13.00
A – Z of Business Intelligence
Phil Wood, SAP BusinessObjects

14.00 – 14.45
The Importance of Business Intelligence – During Market Growth & Recession
Richard Neale, SAP BusinessObjects

14.45 – 15.30
Revolutionizing your Business Intelligence (with SAP BusinessObjects Explorer)
Chris Darvill SAP BusinessObjects and Stewart Faith, BI Specialist

16.00 – 16.45
A New Era in Information Management
Richard Neale and Barry Dodds SAP BusinessObjects

16.45 – 17.30
BI for SAP Customers (Designing a BI strategy for your SAP Landscape)
Chris Darvill, SAP BusinessObjects

The tour is mainly focused on executives, IT decision makers and business managers. Registration for the event is free, and registration is still open, so if you are available and want to learn more about SAP and it’s future vision, it is an event well worth attending.

SAP BOBJ – What area should I focus on?

As a Business Objects professional it is important to keep both your technical skills and general Business Intelligence knowledge up to date. Along with being certified, being up to date on events helps you to stand out against a backdrop of people who, on paper perhaps, share similar experience to you. It is also important to be aware of the impact certain events may have on your current and future career plans.

Following the integration of Business Objects into SAP, I was wondering about the opportunities that this may present me and my company going forward. I’m sure many SAP professionals are thinking the same thing.

I then came across an article written by Jon Reed. In this article, Jon discusses how he thinks the SAP Business Objects acquisition is going to affect job requirements, and goes on to suggest areas which might be worth focusing on. Jon is well known within SAP circles and has written extensively on SAP related topics. His article makes for interesting reading and should certainly help you with future career planning.

RSS Feed

A few people have asked whether an RSS feed is available for this blog.

I didn’t set one up, but it appears that you can add this blog to your RSS reader in a number of ways:

To add this blog using a URL, type the following into your reader:

If you are using Firefox, you should see an RSS icon in far right of the URL bar:
If you are using IE, you will see an RSS icon on the toolbar:
I’m sure there are similar methods for users of other web browsers.

A costly spreadsheet error

An oversight on a spreadsheet appears to have resulting in Barclays overpaying substantially for Lehman assets during the credit crunch.

It appears that rows on an Excel spreadsheet represented Lehman assets. A second column held a Y/N value to indicate whether Barclays wanted the asset. A filter was placed to show only those ‘Y’ assets. However, as the document passed through various hands, the filter column was deleted, resulting in both Y and N rows being displayed. Hence, it would appear that Barclays ended up on the hook for more than it bargained for.

Further details can be read here.

Woops – user deleted folder and it’s contents

It not the first time I’ve come across this issue.

A user has misinterpreted the X on the folder list as a close button, and before you know it, a frantic call is made to IT support to recover a deleted folder.

In nearly all cases where I’ve set up security, I’ve strongly recommended that the delete object functionality is disabled. Some clients want that functionality, and who am I to deny them that? But once they become aware of the issue, they are normally happy to change the permission.

CMS performance problems

Having CMS performance problems? I found the following post on the Business Objects forum which may help.

It involves tweaking a registry entry and increasing the ‘MaximumObjectsToKeepInMemory’ parameter.

I’ve made this change on my test system, however, it really needs a larger installation to check whether it works. One thing to try if I come across a client with performance issues.

Usual caveats about changes to registry – BACKUP, BACKUP and BACKUP.

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