Watching Henning Kagermann at Sapphire, or following the coverage of software 2007, where Hasso Plattner continued his cloud,in-memory and community riff, you can get a sense of SAP’s longer term direction. This is goodness, but today I met SAP’s future.
I had lunch with a developer; Martin Grund. Not one of the seasoned and sometimes crusty veterans that I normally hang out with in my ERPy comfort zone, but a youngster. A newly minted graduate of the Hasso Plattner Institute, comfortable in ABAP, Java, Ruby on Rails, bilingual, wiki fan, start up on the side veteran, who twitters, and blogs in German with the occasional English techie post. Having done a couple of lengthy university assignments with SAP research, he knew what he was getting himself in for. I’m impressed by what he says about the HPI and Hasso’s active engagement there. He sees masses of innovation going on inside core development, and is genuinely excited to be working here. There’s lots that frustrates him too.
I’d love to see senior and middle management do far more to actively encourage this new wave of developers to use their social media savviness to enrich the community driven development we are showcasing so strongly. Use NDA’s sparingly and give them the cultural freedom and the time to experiment, question, absorb and connect. I’d better stop, otherwise I’ll start sounding like an 80’s model turned singer with a coloratura soprano voice and very big hair who married a called bloke Bobby and has an alleged drug problem.