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Enzo Yue

Blog it Forward - Enzo Yue

Posted by Enzo Yue Apr 23, 2015

Hi every one,

 

I was blogged by my colleague Blog it Forward - Rachel Tang , and I really like this amazing idea, so I would like to thank Rachel for the invitation. If you are interested in it too, you may join it via Blog It Forward (BIF) Chain.


Who I am and What I do

My name is Yue Yiqian (岳一倩), Yue is my family name and I named myself as Enzo when I joined SAP (it would be easier for our colleagues from other countries to call me). Most of our Chinese colleagues would name English name by ourselves. Sometimes we even change our English name when we change to another company, it is amazing, right?

 


Currently I am a member of Enterprise Support Advisory Center at SAP, Subject Matter of Expert is HANA area. My team is supporting Enterprise Support to Implement/Run/Innovate Better and Simple. You may know more via following link & picture.

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I was a Support Consultant focus on SD component when I started SAP since 2005, and I worked in that area for 4 years. Then I transferred to Enterprise Support Advisory Center. The main reason is that I want to work more closely with our customers, setting up more closed relationship with our customers. And being an Enterprise Support Advisor perfectly meet my goal here! I hold regular conference call with my customers, listening customer`s voice, reviewing customer system/project, guiding our customers to consume SAP Enterprise Support services. I always have a great sense of accomplishment when I got customer trust.


My personal life dream

 

 

 

 

My hometown is Dalian, a small city located Northeast of China. There is very beautiful sea, and beach. Of cause, BEST seafood in China! Clear four seasons, not too hot in summer,  not too cold in winter either. Dalian is famous in China, because of its delicious seafood, and nice weather.

 


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In my personal life, I love traveling, and tasting delicious foods. So controlling my weight is always my first priority task. My husband is also working at SAP, we shared mentor after we join SAP, then got married. Now we have a 5 years old girl, named Lemon. So SAP, it really means something to me. I spent many important life stages here. And I
have 2 cat, one named - Ham, another one named - Roast Chicken.

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Questions asked by Rachel

 

What is your professional life dream?

 

- Become an Engagement Architect.

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you most enjoy on SCN?

 

 

- Gaining knowledge, and learn the most popular things.

 

 

Which country/city is your last stop in your last trip?


- Japan.

 

 

 

Blogging it Forward:

  


I'd like to blog it forward to the following people:

Maria Isabel Cifuentes Javier Menendez CalvoEcho Xia   Michael Moloney  David Moran  Gian ReisSarah Riolobos Jacky WangNoé Rodriguez Belinda Zhang  Jessica Facchin Lichee Yu

I’m sure you’re already aware of the organizing principle of the current SCN platform: People congregate, contribute, and converse all around the SAP “communiverse” in pockets called “spaces.” Spaces are essentially specialized communities based on SAP products, solutions, industries, topics, and events.


I think the pros and cons of spaces are pretty well-known at this point. They collectively make up our community, but at the same time segment it. They’re efficient, in terms of bringing people and content together around specific topics, but inflexible when it comes to dissemination of content. Returning visitors might not be exposed to information they care about because the platform doesn’t do well with the notion of “Create Once, Publish Everywhere.” As a newbie, you might not even know where to begin. And with the expansion of the SAP communiverse – the inevitable increase of spaces over time – things only get more spread out.


It’s time to explore the communiverse beyond spaces.

 

Content is king, but metadata rules!

 

The future community will be based on metadata. Governed metadata will drive navigation and structure content for user consumption, and it will also power reputation and moderation services that keep the community humming along expertly and effectively. Governed metadata is not a new concept for community; it just turned out that the space-based structure proved to be overpowering compared to the implementation of metadata.

 

As Oliver Kohl, lead architect for the community, put it in The Long Run, “Although tags and even categories exist already, we forced ourselves to organize the content and permissions for managing the content into [the space] concept, which turned out to be a not-so-great idea.”

 

Currently, visitors to the site must select from among 450+ spaces when choosing where to create a piece of content. Unshackled from the confines of selecting this space or that, users will be able to select multiple tags related to his or her content so that it may surface in the appropriate browse/search/follow experience. This is more along the lines of “Create Once, Surface in Multiple” experience that we strive for.

 

Meet the “1DX metadata schema”

 

The metadata schema for the community will simply be the metadata of SAP. There’s much work going on within the 1DX project to align metadata across systems and channels so that we’re all speaking the same language. This is a major piece of foundational work that will help achieve the goals of 1DX on an iterative basis, bringing SAP digital properties in greater and greater cohesion.

 

We’re doing things like updating the extensive software product list at SAP to get it in shape for this common schema. We’re also refining the list of so-called “topics” to include as values, to support content around such lively subjects as ABAP. There are also solutions, industries, events, and more. The team is working out what to include as these main buckets, or properties, and the values to include within them as part of the governed metadata schema.

 

The schema will evolve as solutions come to market, products get renamed, and new topics bubble up.

 

This metadata alignment will help us make connections across digital channels – for example surface relevant blogs on official product pages, but also provide contextual product and support information from the community in the future. Again from Oliver’s blog, “This will allow for a much greater flexibility and more granular contextualization of content and activities.” We’ve had governed metadata on the community before, but a common schema can be shared across all content types – blogs, KBs, Help Documentation, installation guides, and on and on. In short, the common metadata schema is how the 1DX vision will be realized.

 

The metadata foundation will provide structural integrity and flexibility no matter what applications we plug in to our best-of-breed platform of the future. Combine this with a personalized activity stream and other social features, and the future looks bright.

 

Think primary tags, not spaces

 

Today we have spaces. We have managed tags. We have user tags. But these constructs are rather independent from each other. The governed metadata is buried and practically irrelevant.  User tags don’t reach beyond the space in which its host piece of content lives. The extra meaning that contributors (sometimes) take the time to attach to their work literally gets lost in space.

 

In tomorrow’s community, the user experience will be abundantly better because such concepts will complement each other… except that we won’t have spaces. We will have primary tags.

 

A primary tag is just a managed tag that the contributor designates as the main subject matter for his/her content.

 

When contributors click “Create” from the future UI, like today, they will be presented with an interface in which they put in content and metadata, but with an intuitive UI that enables easy tagging.  Contributors will have to select at least one managed tag as the primary tag, and may also select the some number of additional tags. They may also add user tags to further contextualize the content. In either case, tags will be suggested by type-ahead functionality, and contributors will be able to create their own user tags.

 

Content will aggregate around both types of tags – in other words, users will be able to see content when they click on either type of tag, although there may be more to display around the managed tags.

 

Metadata, the fabric of the future

 

The result will be a more interconnected, cross-referential, and navigable universe of content. You’ll be able to follow content based on tags of your choice, but not so exclusively that you won’t find enticing new paths to go down throughout the experience.

 

One last point on metadata and primary tags is that they will power the gamification and moderation services. In short, metadata drives the consumption and navigation of content, and the reputation and moderation programs – in a sense, tags are the thread and metadata the fabric that weaves the next generation community together.

 

More to come about metadata and its relationship to reputation, moderation, and migration.

Hi every one,

 

I was blogged by my colleague Caetano Almeida (Blog it Forward - Caetano Almeida) and Nancy Guo (Blog it Forward - Nancy Guo)and I'm here today to accept this challenge and create my own BIF blog, talking a little bit about myself. You can find more information about this called on the blog Blog It Forward Community Challenge and add your name into the Blog It Forward (BIF) Chain if you want to join it.


My introduction

 

My born name is Tang Rui (唐瑞), Tang is my family name and I named myself as Rachel Tang when I joined SAP as it's much easier for my colleagues from other countries to call me. Talking about the age, it is a secret for every lady, but you will find out it after reading through my blog.

From my name you may already know that I was born in China. My hometown is a small city located in the north-west of China, called Karamay, it is famous for Oil because it has one of the biggest oil fields in China and named by it.Ketouji.jpg

Driving to the west for no more than two hours from my hometown, you will reach the centre of Eurasia - The fastest place from the sea of the world, this is also why the second large desert of the world - Taklimakan Desert is not far away.

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But no WORRY, I was not living in the middle of the desert, my hometown is like a shinning star, it is very beautiful and full of water. Walking through it, you can imagine you are walking in a European town as it's clean and bright.

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I was born there and lived there for 18 years. I was dreaming of ocean because I was far away from it. So I chose a university which is located in a city just nearby the sea. The city is Dalian where I am living now.

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Therefore I need to fly more than 5 hours then drive 4 hours to come back to my hometown now. However, distance can never stop my footsteps back home.

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SAP and me


In the year 2006, I finished my 5 years college life in Dalian University of Technology and received a dual degree for Computer Science and International Economy and Trade. Then I joined SAP in the summer of 2006 untill now. My main area are ERP MAN and PLM. I learned a lot here and met many nice people here. I am also happy that I can of some use to help others because of my work. This is my 9th year in SAP, after these years of experience, I become familiar with production process, classification, variant configuration, batch management, project system and some other area. I also grow up in my personal life, I got married, my first boy was born in 2012, my second boy was born in 2014. When I joined SAP, I was a happy girl, now, I am a hot mummy.


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I love my job and my family. I feel happy with my work, as I can help many others with many problems. I am even happy in my life, as I have two lovely sons. I hope the happy life can continue like this forever.

 

Fun facts about me:

 

I do no good at sports but I love watch sports games, maybe not the game itself, but the super stars. I like Luis Figo, Michael Jordan and many top stars. I watch World Cup and NBA. I also like some sports that is not very famous like Curling. I enjoy the feelings during the process, exciting with them, laughing with them and feel regretful with them.

I am also a big fan of cartoon, not only the cartoon from Disney and DreamWorks, but also the cartoon from Japan like One Piece and Naruto.

 

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The last one, I love travel, meet different peopel, know different culture, see different view.

 

So do you know my age now? If you read my blog carefully, you will find the correct answer. You will get a sweet candy in your dream if you give a correct answer.


Questions asked by Caetano


If you were 20 again, what would you study?

 

- Art and music.

 

What do you enjoy most in your work and why?

 

- Share my knowledge with others, discuss anything freely with others and help others from their pain points.

 

What is your favorite musician/band?

 

- Jacky Zhang (张学友) and Westlife

 

Answer to the 3 optional questions(2 from BIF and another one made by myself):

 

What is your professional life dream?

 

- Become an Architect of SAP system.


What do you most enjoy on SCN?

- Share knowledge and learn knowledge and help others.

 

Which country/city is your last stop in your last trip?

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- You should know where it is from the above picture.

 

Blogging it Forward:

 

I'd like to blog it forward to the following people:

Brendan Ward

Enda Fennelly

Sam Su

Uwe Dittes

Gerald Vilimovsky

Judith Gabriel

Shashidhar Betadur

Harry Wu

Zhenbo Wang

Maggie Su

Summer Wang

Lorand Zoltan Kokai

Ada Lv

Judy Zhang

Claire Yang

Allen Wang

Imola Bogat

Sabine Trosse

Kim Jin

Diana Dai

Jason Shao

Webster Cui

Hunter Lin

Polly Gan

Jane Ma

Yolanda Xu

Enzo Yue

 

博文传承 - 唐瑞(Rachel Tang)

     This article is part of the Blog it Forward  Challenge. Thank you Diana Mihaylova for challenging me and congratulations for your good article in the Blog it Forward  Challenge.


Once upon a time…

 

... there was a small boy who was dreaming to become a politician while all other kids wanted to be either spacemen or police officers. That boy suddenly realized that this path will change his life forever and very likely in a negative way. Therefore he decided to become a mathematician and after that programmer. Thus far he is still trying to make the world a better place through technologies…

 

Valentin@SAP

 

     I am part of the biggest software provider company in the world since 2012. I was finishing 2nd grade of my bachelor degree of computer science at Sofia University when SAP invited me for an interview. I met them on an entrepreneurship conference and was not planning to change my old job initially. But I realized that SAP could provide me with what I need – new and interesting challenges. Now I am part of a very dynamic environment and I feel like connected to the whole world.

     During my almost 3 years in the Lab I was able to work in different organisations. In the beginning I was part of the development support organisation where I had the opportunity to be very close to our customers. It was interesting and full of challenges job. In the last 6 months I am working in the single sign-on team in Sofia, where we implement the latest security trends in our software... because SAP does not simply helps one’s life run simpler but also run safer.


Valentin@Innojam


     In the early 2015 I had the opportunity to travel to Hanover, Germany to meet wonderful people, to see wonderful places and to spend wonderful time. I said “Well, if I have to..” , and went there loaded with positive energy. Speaking about energy I later understood that I should have taken my whole bag of energy and not keep half of it at home, because you know… you run out of energy especially after 2 days with almost no sleep. But what was it all about. As every year in the past .. hmm I don’t know how many years, Hanover is the kind host of the CeBIT event, a gorgeous event by the way. But we were not traveling for it, although we had 2 days to walk around the CeBIT. We were traveling for the innojam competition hosted by SAP. Wonderful possibility not only to meet new people, but also to implement a great idea which later can win the competition. Well, we didn't win, but we qualified in the final four, which was great – thank you Nedyalko Yotov huang hua Zoran Lisovac Leonard Nurnberg Jaroslaw ZdanowsSierra Yang Quan Xiaotong and Zong Maggie … for all the great moments, thank you SAP for making this real.


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Questions addressed to me by my blog it forward challenger Didi.

 

Describe yourself with 3 words:

Knowledge_seeker, emotion_seeker and justice_seeker, because if there is no knowledge, there is no progress, if there are no emotions, new friends and funny moments, then you are just a deaf man on a magnificent concert, and of course if there is no justice.. I don’t know, I just love justice.

 

What do you dream of:

I dream of a world with no boundaries of religions, race, gender, I dream of world dominated by justice not rich people.

 

Which do you prefer – an ugly victory or a beautiful defeat? Why?

It depends on the price. If I fight for one's life I prefer to save them in an ugly way than kill them beautifully. Fortunately I do not fight for anyone's life and in my daily life I divide the things on those I learned something from and those I did not. After all life requires you to get better every day and sometimes you can learn more from a defeat than from a victory. Nevertheless I am a 'win hungry' individual and I love quoting that "being second is just being first in a long queue of losers". Having this desire to win and striving for more knowledge every day, I am trying to find the balance between losing and winning in my personal and professional life.

 

Blog it forward

I would like to blog it forward to Ralitsa Dobreva and Lyubomir Lalev

1. Joy is found with simple awareness. What does your joy look like today?

2. What do you value most in this life?

3. Do you like the current situation in your country and if not why didn't you change it yet?

Hi to everyone,

 

As some of the prerequisites, I would like to thank Arijit Das  Blog It Forward - Arijit Das and Chandra Shekhar Agarwal

Blog It Forward- Chandra Shekhar Agarwal who have invited me to this world of BIF.

 

I didn't knew that there is such interesting thing on SCN , where you got to know about the people of our SAP community

from different parts of the world. Especially the culture, cuisine and history related to one's native place.

 

Time to Introduce Myself !!

 

My name is Somya Sharma (as you have already read on the top). I was born and brought up in the Meerut city Of Uttar Pradesh , India.

I am a fun loving person who loves to explore different places and is eager to know about different customs of the society.

Well, as it is said, the destiny plays a very important role , and I strongly believe in it .


 

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Education

 

I have done my High School from St. Thomas Convent School Meerut , For higher education I went to Banasthali University, Jaipur Rajasthan.

There I completed my Metrics and Engineering from stream Information Technology.

Just like every one, my college days were the best days with beautiful environment, wonderful teachers and life long friends.

Here I am sharing some pictures from my school and college life.

 

My School

(On the Annual function day)

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My College

 

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My Besties

 

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Presently, I am working as a SAP CRM technical consultant in Knack Systems, Mohali (Chandigarh) .

This is my first company, I have started working with.

I have added my SCN account this year only, and I just love its idea of helping people across the globe.


My Interests:


I am an ecofriendly person and loves to stay in touch with nature.

I can happily spend my leisure time in watching TV , surfing net , cooking and listening music.

Having traits of a normal girl, I am a shopping freak.


My colleagues


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Some of the my hangouts!!!


 

 

At Nariman Point (Mumbai)

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My Visit to Agra ( With cousins At Taj)

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   OMG ! This one is from my childhood....... in Kasauli Hills

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  At Naina Devi Temple (Himachal Pradesh)

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Questions asked to me...

My dream job when I was a kid..

 

When I was a kid , I wanted to be a singer as well as an actress( well who says it was just a childhood dream )

Well that was all, I wanted to share about myself. Hope You guys enjoy reading my first blog .


I would like to BIF to @Umashankar Poojar.

My question is:

How much your college studies help you in your professional life?

For now, you probably heard about the Future of Community and One Digital Experience project. I have to say that I'm honoured to temporarily take over the role of Gali Kling Schneider as the owner of blogs, discussions/Q&A and moderation for six months and to be part of the huge family of the 1DX Community and the wonderful team led by Jeanne Carboni.

 

But let's get down to business.

 

I'm happy to announce that we reached an important milestone in the project regarding the new blogging platform and we are looking for volunteers for an experience validation test and to provide feedback.

 

Who is the ideal volunteer?

 

It is YOU! You can be a partner, a developer, a customer, a techie or a business person...etc. The only important thing is that you are the member of our Community.

 

What does this mean?

 

This study will help us get feedback about our work so far. It will involve recording your opinions as you follow along the tasks, while having a tool recording your computer screen, mouse clicks and audio. At the end of the test, there will be a few short written questions to answer.

 

We need your feedback!

 

You can volunteer by adding your name and SCN User Profile to the1DX Blog Testing - Volunteer Application Form. The first eight volunteers will be contacted via e-mail about the next steps. If a volunteer decides that they cannot do the test, we will choose from the additional people (marked with +1 in the form) to participate.

 

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UPDATE: We got a huge number of volunteers in record time, thank you so much everyone! The application form is closed, so no further application is possible now.

 

Looking forward to getting your feedback!

Gabi

Hi SCN Guru's,

 

After following more than 1 year Open SAP courses i was wondering if this could not be more incorporated with SCN. It's already integrated with SAP in a way that single sign on is working with your s-user.

Some ideas for improvement:

  • Full search through the content of Open SAP
  • A broader OPEN SAP awareness
  • Rewards for following a course according to your achievment
  • ...

 

If any of you guys have additional thoughts or ideas please feel free to react or comment .

 

Cheers

 

Kurt

This blog is part of the “Blog it Forward” challenge. At the beginning, I would like to thank Diana Mihaylova who Blog it Forward to me.

I will begin with short introduction:

 

Hi, I am Nedyalko Yotov thank you for reading this blog. I am currently Associate Developer in Net Weaver KM Team @SAP Labs Bulgaria. I am also a Software Engineering student in Sofia University.

 

Me@History

I was born in 1992 in the small town of Vidin, Bulgaria. When I was a little child I loved to paint, play football and ride a bike. When I start studying Mathematics in school I start to dream to work numbers, lot of information and to solve difficult problems.
In my high school I was introduced to the word of computers and programming and it changed me a lot. There I met for the first time my big teenage love – JAVA. And I start to learn how the software is really made, not only the coding, but also the whole process of defining, validating and verifying the software and I start a Bachelor Degree in Software engineering.

Me@SAP

During second year in University, I applied for Internship Program in SAP. Here is the moment to thank my manager Nedyalko Dobrev for giving me a chance to start my career in SAP. During my Internship program, the whole team and especially my mentor - Velislav Velkov helped me a lot to learn a lot new technologies and helped me to understand that it is not only the everyday tasks that should be done perfect - you should work with collaboration with others and never stop improve yourself technically to be more effective.
In SAP I have an opportunity to learn new technologies, attend to different courses and most important – in SAP I have a chance to meet inspiring, motivated and nice colleagues every day. I build strong friendship with them and we meet, call and write even when we are not at office.

Me@Innojam


Before couple of weeks I was on the #bestEventEver – SAP InnoJam at CeBIT, Hanover. Thanks to awesome SAP University Alliances Team and Ann Rosenberg for organizing it and for choosing me to be part of it. During the event I met more than 70 students from 15 countries and we create friendships that we least for a long time.

I have also to thank my whole team – TEAM 7 (huang hua, Zoran Lisovac, Valentin Mezev, Leonard Nurnberg, Jaroslaw Zdanowski, Sierra Yang, Quan Xiaotong and Zong Maggie)– You were amazing! For all of the Design Thinking process, 32 hours of coding (using SAP HANA Cloud Platform and SAPUI5) and presentation at final stage, we managed to hold our team spirit high and work together.

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Greetings to the other #InnoJammers - continue to innovate and inspire people around you. I hope that we will meet again soon.

Me@Questions

Describe yourself with 3 words?
Ambitious, confident and methodical.

 

What do you dream of?


I dream to become an expert in SAP technologies and to create and design new products – I think that we are building the future with innovation, fast technologies and simplicity, our applications work with Big Data, make calculation and statistic and everything with information – stored in Cloud and represent all this to our Customers in elegant and simple SAP Fiori interface.
I also dream to stay surrounded by clever, inspiring, creative and helpful people, because people around us, shape the person that we are.

 

Which do you prefer – an ugly victory or a beautiful defeat? Why?

A beautiful victory. My goal is allays to be a winner, but to win with style, knowledge, excellence, respect to others and to win it such way, that in the end all my rivals stand and give a strong ovation.

Me@Blog it Forward

Now it is my turn to blog it forward to Shrikirti TiwariJeroen Luitwieler, @Zoran_Lisovac, Sophia Shan Dimcho Karpachev and @Nicolas_Goris.

1. When did you first use SAP Technologies? Which is your favorite one?
2. Which is your favorite moment from InnoJam this year?
3. How do you see yourself in five years?

Thank you for your time! Regards,
Ned

Maksim Rashchynski is an SAP NetWeaver Architect running his own consultancy, MAKRA Consulting, and the SCN Member of the Month for April, 2015.

 

I noticed Maksim because he is consulting on the forefront of new UI/UX technology, and he has been driving active discussions and insights around SAPUI5 and Fiori on SCN. He also shares his tips and tricks openly through informative blogs, and answers questions generously. Some insights Maksim shared:

  • Knowledge is like a seed, not gold - you plant it to get more, not stash it
  • The problem solving process is a great motivator to explore new areas and organize knowledge in a more structured way, evolving from gut feeling to clear understanding

In addition to being a seasoned techie, he is an active father of two and leather craftsman who makes among other things, handmade moccasins for his little girl. (I bet you all want to see the photo as much as I did, keep reading, it's included below.) We both agreed on the joy a tangible creative outlet provides, it is like a form of mediation or therapy for those of us who spend so many hours working in front of a computer.


Can you tell us a bit about yourself, where you live, what kind of work you do, and other things you would like to share with the community (hobbies, fun facts)?
I live in Laguna Niguel, California and I am in the consulting business, doing mostly UI/UX related work for customers running SAP. I can define myself as “usability freak”, I am known for fighting for every click a user has to make.

 

Data analysis and visualization is another passion, I use HCP and SAP Lumira for a lot of personal things, like finance/budget, workouts, weight and even grocery analysis and visualization.

 

I can claim 15 years of mobile development experience as my diploma at university included an application for Palm Pilot.

 

I usually spend my free time with my family, South California gives tons of options, our favorite spots are the Natural History Museum in LA ( Dinosaurus! ), Legoland and Balboa Park in San Diego.

 

When my kids are in bed, my main hobby is programming (surprise!). Now with Raspberry Pi and Lego Mindstorm NXT results are all around the house :-).

 

Sometimes I like to make things from leather, it is a very meditative process with immediate tangible results. My most recent piece is a set of moccasins for my 9 month old daughter.

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  Maksim contemplates SAP security

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   Hand-made moccasins

Living in South California you would hardly avoid outdoor and ocean related hobbies like paddle boat and bodyboarding, so whenever I have a chance I go to the beach. Swimming, running, and basketball are sports I prefer in order to stay in shape.

 

When did you become a member of SCN and which areas are you most active in?
In November 2014 I had a 10th anniversary, wow. I got inspired by my ex-colleague Valery Silaev.

 

Areas were Web Dynpro Java, Web Dynpro ABAP, Java Development, SAP Enterprise Portal - initially; UI Development Toolkit for HTML5 Developer Center, SAP Fiori, SAP Gateway, SAP Cloud Applications Studio - currently.

 

I noticed you generously share coding tips and tricks you’ve come up with in your own SAPUI5 consulting work. What motivates you to share your expertise? And how do you find the time to contribute so actively on SCN?
There are a couple of aspects to why:


  1. First, I personally feel like knowledge is like a seed, not gold - you plant it to get more, not stash it. Sharing and exchanging  ideas is a great way to get an inspiration for something new. Synergy allows you to grow and develop professionally. The world of SAP technologies is so big, it is hard for one person to know each and every aspect even in one field. Just a couple of examples from the SAPUI5 community - I didn’t use custom controls, but after following Dennis Seah’s blogs and posts I started realizing the power of them (I even “declared” him a King of the Custom Controls http://scn.sap.com/message/15692272#15692272 ). Or using Grunt to generate a pre-loaded version of a component - I had no idea until I read about it on SCN.
  2. Second, there is a theory in teaching saying that explaining something to someone will make it more clear for yourself. There is a Russian joke about a professor explaining a theory to students for the third time in a row, losing patience and shouting - It got clear even for ME but you are still not getting it!...
  3. Third, I like the problem solving process, that itself is a great motivator to explore new areas and organize knowledge in a more structured way, evolution from gut feeling to clear understanding. Questions with 0 answers, hanging unanswered for couple days (sign of a no-easy-answer) - that’s my favorite treat ;-)

 

Time wise it is usually 3 batches, in the morning, lunchtime and in the evening. I go through the list of questions, pick interesting, answer straightforward, bookmark more challenging to work on them later. Blogs and documents are usually for evenings/weekends. I had a pretty light work load in February/March (“bonus” of being an independent consultant), so I spent a lot of time on SCN.

 

Do you have any fun talents you’d like to tell the community about? Jokes, songs, a dance?

I played a Russian Santa Claus (Ded Moroz) at my son’s school for the last couple years.


I noticed you haven’t participated in the Blog It Forward Community Challenge yet. Any plans to?

That challenge started during my SCN “blackout” period, I don’t mind at all if someone throws a ball to me.

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   Maksim as Russian Santa Claus



Would you share your experience with the SAP digital landscape with me? What is SAP doing right? What could SAP being doing better to get you the tools and information you need to do your job?
I am really impressed with what SAP did to raise awareness in the UI/UX field. OpenSAP courses, experience.sap.com, Public Fiori Sandbox etc. That, to be honest, was so “not SAP” initially... but after a while it became a “new SAP” to me.

What SAP could be doing better? I think if SAP can come up with a cheat sheet having TCode in one column and Fiori app in another - that would be huge! Oversimplified, I know, but I heard that wish at least 3 times last year from 3 different clients. Customers like to be guided, clear direction for further move; sometime SAP lacks that, IMHO.

Is there an SCN member you admire (OK… you can name a few)? And for what reason?

Tough question, list could be like 30+ positions long, let me pick 2 leaders from my favorite spots - Fiori and SAPUI5:

Masayuki Sekihara - Size of a contribution is huge, just hat off, can’t really imagine how it is possible from a time management perspective

Robin van het Hof - I feel like Robin shares the same values in community and in technology vision that I have


Easy question: Mac/iOS or Windows? Or Android?
Windows and Android, sometime I have to fix my wife’s Air though ;-) and iPad to watch movies while running on a treadmill

Are you on Twitter?
In read only mode https://twitter.com/rashchynski_max (@rashchynski_max). I joined in 2007, just after their debut at SXSW, I lived in Austin that time and witnessed the “birth of the star.”



Every month, a member of the SAP Community Network is recognized for exemplary behavior: sharing knowledge with peers, being helpful and taking on additional tasks to support community engagement. See the list of previous members recognized on the SCN Member of The Month Hall of Fame.


This blog post is a part of the "Blog It Forward" challenge. To begin with, I would like to thank Michal Korzen who blogged forward to me, and successfully managed to convince me to write.

 

Once upon a time…
…a girl called Diana was studying Business Administration and working as a Web Content Manager. She loved her job so much and she had planned her career for years ahead. Unfortunately the company she worked for lost is biggest client and Diana and her colleagues had to look for new opportunities. For the then 22 years old girl It seemed like her world is falling apart.

The lesson she learned at that moment – The only sure thing in life is change.

 

Now…
…I know that this was one of the best things that ever happened to me because that is how my fairytale started. This was the moment when I had the time to try new things. This was the moment when I found out that I wanted to create. This was the moment when I started coding. At the same time that moment was hard for me because almost everyone around me was sceptical about my new initiative, especially my parents. But as the most optimistic person in the world I made a decision that I wanted to transform that skepticism of others into a stimulus for me to prove them that I can and I will do it. I will become a programmer. And I made it.

The lesson I’ve learned at that moment – When you think you can or you think you can’t – either way you’re right.

 

Me@SAP
When Zornitsa Nikolova (my first Manager at SAP) and Konstantin Vassilev (Software Developer), gave me the chance to start my IT career in SAP I was the happiest person in the world!
I started as an Intern in the Environment, Health and Safety Management team and I wrote in ABAP and it’s frameworks which was an experience that I couldn’t get outside of SAP. All of my friends were as interested in the language as I was and asked me about it all the time.

One year later I was the happiest person in the world (again) when I started in Vladimir Velinov’s SAPUI5 Control Development team as an Associate Software Developer.

Most of the people think that in the big company like SAP everything is boring, gray and there is no visibility. Not in the SAPUI5 team! The most interesting thing for me when I started there was the startup spirit. And I was sure that this is my place.

Also with my background as a BA Bachelor my colleagues trusted me and gave me the chance to become a Scrum Master – a role that was interesting for me for quite some time.

 

The lesson I’ve learned – Some opportunities only come once, seize them!

 

Me@InnoJam

#bestweekever #nothingIveeverexperiencedbefore

All that I can say about the InnoJam at Hannover during the CeBIT event will be nothing compared to the things I’ve learned there, the people I’ve met and the emotions I’ve felt. Big THANK YOU to SAP University Alliances for giving me the opportunity to participate as a student (now I’m a Distributed Systems and Mobile Technologies Master student).

More than 70 students from 15 countries we were separated to 12 teams. With the support of the biggest Design Thinking and Presentation experts from SAP and the SAP University Alliances Mentors each team made an app that can help a lot of people to make their buildings, campuses, traffic and homes smart.

One more time – congrats to the winning teamMarat, Bowen, Nicolas, Ameera, Joe, Felix – you were amazing, guys! And congrats for all of us for the wonderful time we spend together and all the friendships we made. Glad that the spirit is alive and our fb group is updating daily with photos, memories and also invitations to go to each other places.

 

The lesson I’ve learned - Life is about the people you meet and the things you create with them.

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Me and Bill McDermott

My colleagues know that I’m obsessed with the book of our CEO Bill McDermott “Winners Dream: A Journey from Corner Store to Corner Office”. Every day on my way to work I’m reading it on my Kindle and I arrive at SAP Labs Bulgaria with my daily dose of motivation. That’s why my first question when I found out that I will be a participant at the SAP InnoJam was “Wow! Will Bill be there?” and when I received a positive answer I promised my colleagues at the office that I won’t return home without a picture with the CEO of SAP (they asked me for one more with Angela Merkel too but I didn’t promised them that). Of course I’ve kept my promise J

 

The lesson I’ve learned at that moment - Be careful what you wish for. You just might get it.

 

Q&A

1. Tell us something we don't know about you and also couldn't have guessed.

     Well this blog is all about that J

 

2. Who inspires you? Why?

     I love being around doers, proactive and creative people, people who have failed a lot of times .But instead of being discouraged, they become more motivated. And most of all – optimism inspires me.


3. What do you enjoy most in your work and why?

     What I enjoy most is that I don’t think of it as my “work”. This is the place where I create, where I meet my awesome colleagues and share ideas or just talk about the last CeBIT event with “the cool gadgets, you know”.

 

Blog it Forward

I would like to blog it forward to Nedyalko Yotov and Valentin Mezev.

  1. Describe yourself with 3 words.
  2. What do you dream of?
  3. Which do you prefer – an ugly victory or a beautiful defeat? Why?

 

Thank you for your time,

Diana

 

 

Guiding the Future of Community

 

By now many of you have heard of the One Digital Experience Mandate and read Maggie Fox 's blog about the Future of Community.

You also might have looked at the community vision thought piece The Long Run by the lead architect of the SAP Community Network (and a passionate and participant community member, himself) Oliver Kohl .

Jeanne Carboni  who manages the SCN Team as well as the Community Destination part of the 1DX project, posted internally a set of principles and goals around the transformation:

  • A positive user experience for all visitors, including content consumers, contributors
    and moderators.
  • Quality content – not just an easy way to publish, not just gamification, not an ad farm.
  • Easy engagement amongst visitors.
  • Simple governance and community management.
  • Differences of opinions / perspectives are welcomed.
  • Clear vision to the project and up-to-date communication.
  • Best of breed technology, coupled with custom development to support these principles  and provide key functions that members expect.


Ensuring the Future of Community

 

So just how do we ensure that community needs are met?

By guidance, steering, advice from the community of course!

To that end we are creating a Strategic Advisory Council with 20 trusted advisors (16 externals and 4 internals) who will advocate for the Community by:

  • Participating in sprints, staging calls and testing
  • Providing feedback and input to community features and user experience
  • Providing input into launch strategy and timing
  • Communicating to the Community about upcoming changes

 

 

Introducing the Strategic Advisory Council

 

This empowered team's ability to help steer, guide and advise on priorities is what we hope will drive a successful transformation.

What better way to build a collaborative, community-focused environment than to do that with vested community?

 

*Note: Selection to the Strategic Advisory Council represents an attempt to create a geographically, culturally, professionally inclusive core.

It was a difficult task selecting.  So many others are equally well qualified so the thinking is to expand this group once the Beta Site is launched.

 

Community ParticipantsCommunity Participants
Abesh BhattacharjeeColleen Lee
John ApplebyMichelle Crapo
DJ AdamsNatascha Thomson
Ethan JewettOtto Gold
Graham RobinsonPaula Rosenblum
Jon ReedAndy Silvey
Jürgen LinsSamuli Kaski

Karen Rodrigues

Somnath Manna

 

SAP Employee Participants

Caetano Almeida
Modak Gupta
Martin Lang
Ludek Uher

 

Commitments to and Expectations of the Strategic Advisory Council

 

The project core team commits to:

  • Provide guidance on Council roles and responsibilities
  • Provide Sprint Showcase sessions (recorded and live) ever other week.
  • Provide beta system.
  • Consider feedback as potential way to alter outcomes.
  • Inform Council of priorities on a regular basis.
  • Maintain final say on priorities, functionality, timing after careful consideration of feedback.

 

The expectations of the Strategic Advisory Council are to:

  • Provide feedback on our proposed engagement model
  • Attend or watch recording of Sprint Showcase call every other week. (30 minutes to 1 hour based on volume of new functionality)
  • Continuously try out evolving functionality in the beta system and/or invite others to beta with agreement of the project core team leads
  • Provide feedback, suggestions on appropriate functionality and timing
  • Engage with UX resources on improvements to the UI – advisory capacity for user research
  • Support communications to the community by sharing early insights.
  • Share concerns with the Core team.

 

Invitation to Participate in this Future...

How might you learn more about this Future of Community and engage?

  • What: we are holding a live Q&A chat session on the Future of Community- Strategy Advisory Council
  • Why: so SCN members can engage and ask questions regarding the Council/the blog
  • When: Monday, March 30th  @ 9AM EST
  • Where: https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/futureofcommunity/
  • Host (s): Jeanne Carboni, Michael Braun, Oliver Kohl, Marilyn Pratt
John Appleby

Content Marketing on SCN

Posted by John Appleby Mar 24, 2015

SCN came out the back of a group of developers and community folks at SAP that wanted somewhere to talk. Read SAP Community Network History for some fascinating history.

 

Once a developer community, it was extended with the Business Process eXperts (BPX) and is now a wide community of varied folks. Acquisitions like Business Objects, Sybase and SuccessFactors have broadened its horizons, and the re-platform of SCN onto Jive and the opening of SCN to anyone, combined with gamification, have really democratized the platform.


What's more, SCN has reach! A truly spectacular blog like Thomas Jung's SAP HANA Extended Application Services can easily net 100k+ views, which is a great way to get visibility and increase brand.

 

The SCN The SCN Rules of Engagement provide some good guidelines on what is and isn't acceptable and are a must-read piece of content.

 

SCN and Products

 

I'm certain that SCN has caused product and marketing folks to realize that it is a great way to promote a product, get wider reach and bang their drum. I'd like to suggest that people, especially those that work for SAP and SAP Partners, take some time to do this intelligently.

 

The SCN Welcome page is an awesome way to understand what kind of content people like, and I'm going to call out some SAP peeps for writing good quality content. But first, let's talk about content marketing.

 

Content Marketing

 

Content Marketing.png

Put simply, Content Marketing is what sits in the intersection of what you want to say, and what your customer wants to read.

 

I don't know if Tom would agree that what he writes is Content Marketing or Developer Enablement (I would argue that they are the same thing) but to me, his pieces like SAP HANA SPS 09: New Developer Features; REST API are what it's all about. Explaining product features, enabling, engaging and educating customers.

 

It wasn't blogged on SCN, but Michael Eacrett's What is new in HANA SPS09 is another quintessential piece of content marketing. There is a little promotion going on, but it's educational, interesting and customers want to read it!

 

The HANA Cloud Platform folks are the same way. Rui Nogueira and Matthias Steiner in particular have created posts like Lightweight HTML5 apps and Git on SAP HANA Cloud Platform and Getting started with SAP River Rapid Development Environment (RDE) - Part 1 which are educational and which of course promote the product they are paid to manage.

 

Press Releases

 

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A shout out here to Timo ELLIOTT, another SAP employee who knows how to market. See Is SAP HANA a Luxury?

and a great companion slideshare to this post Evangelism and The Future of Digital Marketing. Oh yeah, the cartoon above is his too!

 

Then you have press releases, which live on the SAP News site, like SAP Cash Management powered by SAP HANA. I'm good with press releases, they serve a purpose - making simple messages available to the market. They're great to track using the Google News feed.

 

But SCN isn't the right place for this information, in my opinion. Instead, SCN should be restricted to Content Marketing. Content should be educational.

 

 

 

The New New SCN

 

Oliver Kohl has described (in a beautiful piece of Content Marketing about the SCN platform) in The Long Run that SCN will be renewed in 2015. We are hoping that as part of this renewal we will see a return to pre-moderation of content which will mean that those who use SCN for "What you want to say to your audience" but which actually falls into the category of "What your audiences doesn't care about" will get some education.

 

But even still, if you're SAP, or a partner, and you want to promote something - please take a few minutes to consider if you could, instead of copy and pasting a press release, take the time to write some content that your audience would want to read.

 

If you don't believe me, look at the SCN Welcome. This front page contains content which has been "liked" by the audience. If you take your time to write content like this, your audience will like it, and you will get the promotion that you need.

 

Follow Ups

 

Thank you to Marilyn Pratt for pointing out Julie Plummer and her excellent content like SAP NetWeaver Business Client 5.0 Overview. I've not tried to call out everyone in the community that does great work, but rather shine a light on a few. And I've deliberately not called out those that I don't think are doing it right, or indeed called out the blog that prompted me to write this post in the first place!

 

Any feedback?

This blog post is a part of the "Blog It Forward" challenge. At the beginning, I would like to thank Vitaliy Rudnytskiy who blogged it forward to me, and successfully managed to convince me to write.


Who I am and what I do

My name is Michal Korzen, and I am currently both an associate consultant, Data Science team member at SAP Poland and a dual-enrolled student. Since my experience at the age of 23 is still limited, let me start my story with my short history.


Short Bio

I was born in 1992 in the lovely city of Zamość, Poland. As a little child, I loved to paint and create. Hardly anyone knows, that Polish Post issued a postage stamp with one of my "paintings" on it in over a million copies ;-). However, pretty soon I've changed the sector of my operation to science. As universities' doors become widely opened for me, I decided in 2011 to start studying Computer Science at the Faculty of Mathematics and Information Science of Warsaw University of Technology. A few months later I started my second field of study - Management (with specialization in Project Management) at Warsaw School of Economics. Every success has always been possible thanks to great people on my way - my parents, teachers, friends and fellow workers, who have always been opened to my questions, ideas and let me to find my own path and make decisions on my own.


Me @ SAP

Everything was going smoothly, so the time has come to take on a new challenge. Therefore, one sunny afternoon last summer I sent my application to local SAP's HR department. I didn't have to long to wait as just a few hours later in the midnight I got a response and quite soon I signed my first contract and luckily joined the consulting NW/BOBJ/HANA team led by my manager Tomasz Sawczuk - my SAP genius that knows the answer to any question. I spent my first three months working with HANA appliance given solely to me. I've devoured tens of thousands of pages of SAP's guides, references and courses, gone over numerous test paths and configuration settings run on the live system and sent endless messages with questions to learn as much as possible and understand in-memory computing in details. As you can imagine, there were days I had to restore or even reinstall HANA not only once a day... ;-) Fortunately, my efforts have been awarded as I've already succeeded in passing HANA certificates.


For almost six months now I've had pleasure to be part of the Data Science team, working with Karol Dworak, Piotr Cogiel, Elżbieta Derecka, Tomasz Nycz and Monika Nycz on Proof of Concepts (PoCs). I have to admit that they are really amazing doing things that are said to be infeasible, pushing back the frontiers for customers. Together, we're trying now to make the impossible possible powered by SAP HANA.


SAP University Alliances

I think that the coolest thing about SAP from a student's perspective is the SAP University Alliances as one gives incredible opportunities and inestimable value. As a student I've got an access to the most inspiring and talented Professionals, Mentors and Executives, students from around the world and more technology than anyone could actually explore.


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I've just got home from Hannover. Good to be back, but I will miss my time at InnoJam @ CeBIT. It was a really fantastic experience to be part of this wonderful event, collaborate and have fun with over 70 students from 15 countries. In the meantime, with my team members, SAP early talents, we've managed in only 32 hours to build our Smart Building app prototype powered by SAP HANA Cloud Platform and SAP Fiori user interface. In real-time it adjusts (among others) heating, lighting and windows to the most suitable and acceptable levels by all people sharing particular space in the office to make workers happy and their office a comfortable place to work.


Once again big thanks to the awesome SAP University Alliances team led by Ann Rosenberg, all the students and both SAP and non-SAP experts for the great experience so far. Hope to see you all again soon!


Q&A

How did you start with computers?

Actually, as far as my memory goes, however I got my first own PC at the age of 7. Inside there was powerful at that time 366MHz Celeron. After a few months,  I got bored of games and started to provide changes in found configuration files - a few times it has gone wrong. Fortunately, at the age of 10 I realized that coding HTML & JavaScript bring much more fun.


How did you start with SAP technologies?

I first heard about SAP from my parents. That time, R/3 was for me a kind of mystery, magic box that gathers everything in one place. I got back to SAP two years ago as I met Vitaliy Rudnytskiy for the first time. He has inspired me to such an extent, that pretty soon I finished my first openSAP course by Thomas Jung. I still remain a big fan of MOOCs - (concerning SAP related content) so far I've finished 9 openSAP and  3 openHPI courses.

 

What do you do to relax and recharge yourself?

I love going to the mountains. I believe that following picture taken by me a few months ago and found on my company's notebook explains everything... ;-)

mountain.jpg


Blog It Forward:

I would like to blog it forward to the real young talents: Diana Mihaylova and Martin R. Hristov (SAP Labs Bulgaria), Jaroslaw Zdanowski (HICRON, Poland). I had a great pleasure to meet them at InnoJam @ CeBIT. Questions that I would like to pass to them are:

  1. Tell us something we don't know about you and also couldn't have guessed.
  2. Who inspires you? Why?
  3. What do you enjoy most in your work and why?


Thanks for your time!

Michal

Oliver Kohl

The Long Run

Posted by Oliver Kohl Mar 20, 2015

Change is the only constant in life. I see this here in Berlin where I live on a daily basis. The city is adapting structurally to the ever changing environment with new people from many different cultures moving in, new hipster eateries opening up, old houses either getting renovated or torn down to get replaced by new ones. While the west part of the city isn't that much affected by this, the former east and especially the areas in the center have been turned upside down. This multitude of cultures coming together, an ever changing environment and a rich history make Berlin, for me and many other people, currently the most exciting city in Europe.

 

SCN has seen a phase of functional stability over the last three years. With Maggie Fox and Jeanne Carboni spilling the beans in their recent blog posts, a major change is coming to SCN. The 1DX program has been the trigger to rethink our strategy and make it fit and adapt to the larger 1DX goals. The plan is to decommission the current platform by end of the year and have it replaced by a modern and longer-lasting combination of new core applications, supported by small, dedicated services built on top of a cloud infrastructure.


I would like to give you an insight into our decision process, why we think the current application that we use for SCN doesn’t fit into the overall 1DX vision and how the new SCN and its high-level architecture are going to work.


Status Quo

When designing a new collaboration experience in order to replace something familiar, something we have gotten used to over the last years, it is important to look back at what we currently have.

 

SCN in its current form is technically a single application. A big monolith, representing a fully integrated social network, which allows you to follow community member but also spaces and content items and get notifications and updates in your personalized activity stream. Especially the social integration aspects of the application are one of its strength, but also the very rich user profile, including the Gamification integration we rolled out close to two years ago.


On the other hand we have core functional elements for creation of blog posts, questions, documents and polls, which don’t live up to current standards. Content is organized by Spaces, which have proven to be inflexible with large amounts of content. A rich set of internal APIs and a plugin framework allow building integrations of external services and small enhancements, but due to its monolithic nature, integration of social functionality into different sites turns out to be difficult at best.

 

Although fully integrated by design, the content and member moderation features, key functionality for a large social collaboration site as SCN, have been a major issue. Moderators are struggling with abysmal capabilities at hand and the community managers had to fall back to after-the-fact-moderation for blog posts due to a major lack of built-in pre-moderation.

 

Mobile access is unfortunately a similar story. The application lacks responsive design and we had to rely on the mobile apps provided to us by the vendor. The native app comes out of the box with no acknowledgement of the Gamification extension (released by the same vendor), branding capabilities or integration of functional enhancement. Of course this is a limitation of native mobile apps in general, but the desktop focus of the web site prohibits any mobile representation of even the smallest extensions we rolled out in the last years.

 

Personally I see the social network aspect we got with the current SCN as a major win for community. There was nothing like that four years ago, and these days it is normal to @ mention somebody in a blog post or check your Communication or Activity Stream to see what is going on in your peer group or the spaces you are following. It has been an exceptional experience to see all of you adopting these new social gestures and capabilities and has formed all of our expectation on how a modern community interacts and communicates, even at large scale.


1DX Vision

Beginning of last year, we on the SAP IT side started the first conversation and workshops with the SCN team, trying to formulate what the 1DX vision actually means for the community. Maggie shared with you already the 1DX high level vision. Behind this are goals to harmonize the overall end user experience across all major SAP sites (like SAP.com, SCN, PartnerEdge, Service Marketplace, Support Portal, Help Portal and SAP Store). Let’s focus on the goals that will have a direct impact on the actual implementation of the future community platform and all of its components.


Unified Look & Feel

We had the SAP Gold theme now being the global brand for all SAP sites, but over time there were may interpretations about how these guidelines should get applied. 1DX not only defines a new, fresh look & feel (L&F) with proper implementation guidelines, but also common page templates e.g. to make different content types look and feel similar from a usage perspective. Ideally a Like or Share button should be at the same position on a content page, independent if it is a blog post, an idea or a product page on SAP.com.


Unified Header & Footer

Part of the L&F is of course the site header and footer. There might have been guidelines, but again interpretations have been many without strict governance and control. 1DX defines a unified header, to be used across the SAP sites, including navigation entries and common controls to access the user profile, SAP search, etc. Similar guidelines are defined for the site footer.


Unified Navigation

Navigation in the core SAP sites were never aligned or harmonized at all in the past. The most complex implementation of a navigation that we probably have is the one here on SCN. This is one of the most discussed items in the program, and a tricky one too. In the end, in an ideal scenario you would want to have a simple, clear navigation, consistent on all SAP sites, always getting you to the right place for the product, topic or industry solution dependent on the context you come from. A tough nut to crack.


Unified Profile

On SCN we have the most rich user profile of all SAP sites. It is loaded with useful information about the registered member, it has a social URL (containing your unique username), and it provides you insight into the member's activity, content created and reputation earned. Again, 1DX strives to provide a single user profile for all. The main contributing site to this new profile will be SCN.


Unified Metadata

On SCN we have used a rich set of defined metadata for tagging since end of 2013. The goal was to provide a clearer indication to our members, what a blog post or discussion is about. SCN currently provides a fixed set of defined tags for topics, products, industries, events and tasks. With 1DX we do the next steps and align this metadata with the harmonized corporate metadata schema that will be used across all core SAP sites. The goal is to have all content pages tagged with uniquely identifiable keywords, which relate directly to an SAP product, industry solution or topic, maybe down to a specific product version.


SCN and 1DX

Many of these tangible and from an end user perspective much needed goals only became clear once we drilled deeper into the high level vision of 1DX, but we saw already very early on, that SCN in its current form of a single monolithic application would not fit into this vision. We sat down to define our own vision statement, which still for me personally brings it all together in a very beautiful way.

 

"Enable anyone on any device to collaborate, engage, network, and access relevant, quality community content across all SAP touch points."


Or put even more simple, as Bill McDermott would: Community everywhere


If we try to harmonize all these aspects as part of 1DX, then this also should include social features that we have on SCN. We would still want to have an activity stream, but it should be able to show activities from other sites (e.g. likes and shares) and be easily accessible from anywhere. In a similar way, activities from across all sites should be able to contribute to the Gamification program and be presented in the unified user profile.


With the goal to harmonize the overall user experience in such a drastic way, an “isolated” social network application like SCN could simply not work. We would have to customize the current solution in a way where it could not be properly supported anymore or would defeat its original purpose and design goals, to provide a fully integrated community platform.


In addition, we also looked back to the last three years to see what was working really well and what not. Again, the integrated nature of the current solution shines, but many other aspects not so much. We heard many of you loud and clear over the years, that central functional pieces like blogging, discussions or moderation don’t live up to current standards. And looking at the roadmap of the third party solution that we use here, there was no salvation in sight. This application is never going to provide the best tools that our community needs to get the job done, neither for the members to find an answer to the pressing issue at the job, nor our army of moderators who try to ensure on a daily basis the high quality standards that we have for content.


This is how we came to the decision to go back to a best-of-breed approach and decommission the current solution.


Goals

Once this idea sank in, we started working out the details of how a future community could look like, where single-purpose applications would integrate into a social network that spans across multiple sites.

If you look at our current solution, you can identify a core set of functionality, which would need to be replaced in a future scenario, ideally with a better or at least equally good alternative.


  • Blogging
  • Discussion
  • Documents
  • Polls
  • Bookmarks
  • Group Chat / DM
  • User Profile
  • Content Browser
  • Activity Stream
  • Social Network
  • Gamification
  • Moderation
  • Search


Some of these functions are of a contributing or collaborative nature, where a user would go in and create a blog post, question, or comment and by that contribute to the community in an active fashion and by that produce content and activities.


The others are more a type of service, where a user would search through all contributions, calculate and show a member's reputation, browse the content, bookmark a blog post or use a personalized, time based view into all the contributions. These services consume the activities and content created by the producer applications and provide integrational value. I would categorize the user profile and social network (building your social graph, @mentioning, following spaces) also as services, with moderation somewhere in between (well worth another blog post).


All of the functional components allow the user to interact with content and other members. The purpose of a social network is to expose these interactions to your peer group in order to foster collaboration and to make it easy to interact with your social graph or discover other people and content of interest.


With that, all the end user activity becomes the glue that defines the social nature of such a scenario. In a community platform with distributed applications and members contributing and collaborating in them, we have to make sure to collect all their social gestures (post, like, share, follow, etc.) and distribute them to the social services for consumption. The same thing will happen here the moment I publish this blog post. The event will get tracked, packaged and sent to an application-internal component, where it will be persisted, accessible for other components like the user profile, activity stream or moderation. Except in the new best-of-breed scenario, we'll have to deal with many distributed applications and services, each specific for its purpose.


Spaces vs. Tags

I have to quickly touch on the space/place concept, which our current platform uses to organize content. A space is mostly a bucket into which you put content. You see this every time you create e.g. a discussion--we ask you where to create the content, and you are in the delicate position to pick one of 500+ spaces available in SCN. Spaces are mostly organized by SAP products, industries, topics or events.

 

What we've seen over the years is that spaces are really hard to manage. Due to the massive amount of content we have in SCN, it becomes impossible to merge or split spaces and their content without an unacceptable long downtime of the system (because this system process should not get interrupted by users creating new content in the processing spaces). It is also worth mentioning that spaces are an artificial concept of the solution we use for SCN. Although tags and even categories exist already, we forced ourselves to organize the content and permissions for managing the content into this concept, which turned out to be a not-so-great idea.

 

In the new community platform, content will solely be organized by tags (and yes, this is worth its own blog post too). A team in the 1DX program is working on a metadata schema which will reflect all SAP products and topics, so that we can offer you a very rich set of metadata that everybody can use to tag the content. This will allow for a much greater flexibility and more granular contextualization of content and activities.


High Level Architecture

If you made it this far and didn't get distracted by some push notification from your mobile (note to self: mention new focus on mobile below), you are probably really interested in how this is going to work. It all depends on the producing application being able to track all of the user activities, package them into a harmonized format and make them available to the consumer services that provide the social integration layer.

Activity Aggregator - High Level Architecture.png

The top layer shows producing applications. Once you have registered and logged in, any of your contributions and social gestures will get sent to the Activity Aggregator (sort of a misleading name, because aggregation means something different in the SAP ecosystem…but this is what we call it), which distributes them to the consuming services in the lower layer.


The Activity Aggregator is based on Apache Kafka, an open source project originating from the needs of the LinkedIn platform. The purpose of the Activity Aggregator is to provide an API endpoint, which is always available to receive messages, store them for a defined amount of time, and make them available to the consuming services, based on a subscription model. The consuming services only get a subset, targeted to their specific use case.


Apache Kafka is a message broker, which is highly performant, redundant and scalable. It has gotten a following in the recent month and I highly recommend having a look into the project, in case you find yourself having to deal with a similar problem. There was a very good podcast episode by Software Engineering Radio where Kafka was discussed in great detail.


The benefit that this architecture gives us is that we have the ability to plug in new content- and activity-producing systems over time, and by that slowly extend SCN over time. Also all of the producer applications are separate servers and don't have any hard technical runtime dependencies, and therefore can be extended and maintained separately. No more single downtime for all of SCN just because we have to release a single bug fix in a small component.


Same is true on the consumer side where we can add new consumers on demand, only providing them a targeted subset of all available activities for their specific use case.


We run all applications and services in our own SAP Cloud. For Kafka and the producer application we leverage our own SAP IT cloud called Monsoon. Some consumer services are also run on Monsoon, while other small, community-specific services are built on HCP as dedicated, single-purpose applications. This gives us a high fault tolerance, so that even when a single application fails, only small parts of the overall functionality become unavailable, while the rest of the community will be unaffected and you might not even notice it.


It is also worth mentioning that all applications and services will be mobile enabled using a responsive design approach. Small supporting services are custom built, using an “API First” approach, which will provide us the ability to build alternative UIs like mobile applications in the future.


Challenges & Wins

As you can see, this is no small undertaking and there are many challenges ahead. The biggest one from a user experience perspective is probably to make it look and feel as integrated as the current single application approach. I will be very straight here and say that we probably won’t get it right on a first try. I’m pretty sure that there will be functional gaps with version 1.0 to what we currently have. Think about something like @ mentioning across distributed applications and getting proper notifications. We know how to do it, but is still a substantial effort to get all the details in place to make it look and feel like a fully integrated experience.

 

Then again, I also see so many advantages over what we currently have:

  • much richer single purpose applications, like a top-notch Q&A platform, one that comes close to what you see with stackoverflow.com
  • a state-of-the art blogging platform with WordPress
  • new tools and approaches to tackle moderation and Gamification
  • the possibility to extend SCN way beyond what we currently have and integrate other SAP core sites in the future
  • and finally, a decent mobile UI that adapts to various device sizes, along with the ability to build native mobile applications specifically for you


In case you got the impression over the last couple of months that SCN is not moving ahead, then this is because we have been busy with building the future of SCN. We have made good strides and we plan to provide you some early access to what we are building in the next couple of months.


This might not be as exciting as Berlin, but you are the citizens of this great community and we are building this for you. It will be a crazy ride and there will be bumps in the road ahead, but we are in it for the long run.

First of all, a GRAND WELCOME in SAP world ! ! !

Its  really a funny thing to receive welcome to newbies from a newbie

 

I have joined SCN long back in 2013 but have started participating from past two weeks. That's why I am a newbie who has a long way to go!

 

Before two weeks SCN was just an engine for me which can give answers to my foolish doubts. But somehow i used to increase my liking towards SCN.

My newly grown interest in SCN can be my new job appointment as Initially i was just an SAP front user  but now i have newly appointed as Associate Consultant for MM/SD module.

 

So, I just want to say all of you NEWBIES that

 

                                        START PARTICIPATING,  GET ENGAGED AND GROW  IN SCN !!!

 

 

***You can  start engaging in SCN by following missions. List of SCN Missions document might b helpful to you. :-)

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