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I never wrote so few blog posts like in 2021. There are several reasons for this. But there are also good news: I was able to attend at least a few conferences this year.

As you can see in my blog, I wrote very few posts this year, compared to previous years. What happened to me? Don’t worry, I’m not retired yet, nor did I changed my job from an Oracle consultant to beer brewer. There are other reasons why I was not very active with blog posts.

The most obvious reason – as often in these days – is the current coronavirus situation. Apart from a few exceptions, I have almost always worked at home all year. When I sit at my desk at home all day to work for customer projects, I lack a bit of motivation to sit at the same desk again in the evening to write a blog post. Before the pandemic, I was often traveling and spent my time on long train rides or waiting times at airports to do such productive things as testing new database features or writing articles or blog posts. This time I miss at the moment.

My major workplace since almost two years: Work at home

Additionally, my work situation has changed, as it probably did for many consultants working in IT. Instead of working several days in a row for one customer, I often have several virtual meetings for different customers and projects on the same day. Sometimes it was too much for me with all the “context switches” between projects. Some of you may know this situation. That’s why some activities that are less urgent have fallen by the wayside. For the coming year, I have planned to reserve more time for things that I enjoy. This also includes writing blog posts.

Virtual Conferences

Besides all the customer projects, I still had several opportunities to give talks at conferences again. Of course, most of these events took place virtually. I was able to present sessions at two AIOUG webinars, APEX connect 2021, ODTUG Kscope21, Oracle Groundbreakers EMEA Tour 2021, DOAG conference 2021 and IT-Tage.

The difficulty of such virtual presentations is the lack of interaction with the participants. Sometimes, as a speaker, you don’t even know if there are listeners in the session. A positive exception was my first AIOUG webinar about SQL performance myths. There were so many questions from the audience in the Zoom chat that I spent almost more time to answer all the questions that for the presentation itself. It seems that people in India are more used to asked questions than in other countries. Thanks for the active audience!

Real Conferences

My personal highlight of the year was the POUG2021 conference in September in Warsaw. It was organized as a hybrid event, so a combination of an on-site conference with some virtual sessions of speakers that were not able to attend. Fortunately, I was able and allowed to attend on-site. After such a long time, it was a real pleasure to speak again in front of a real audience. And it was really great to meet many friends and colleagues of the Oracle ACE community again. Thanks a lot to the POUG team for organizing this wonderful conference!

POUG2021 community
Many happy speakers at POUG2021 in Warsaw (Source: Twitter/@LuizafromPoland)

I was able to attend two more on-site events in September and October: a meet-up of the German Data Vault User Group (DDVUG) in Nuremberg (I wrote about it in my last blog post) and a local meet-up of the Swiss Oracle User Group (SOUG) in Basel (I was there only as an attendee, not as a speaker).

The Trivadis Performance Days 2021 were originally planned as an on-site event, but because the corona situation, it was changed to an online event. Fortunately, some of the speakers were able to travel to Zurich anyway, so I had the pleasure to attend two delicious speakers dinners with Christian Antognini, Jonathan Lewis, Neil Chandler and Randolf Eberle-Geist. The presentations we broadcasted from our “TV studio” in the Trivadis office in Zurich. Not a real on-site conference, but much better than to present from home.

Another on-site event I planned to attend end of November was the UKOUG together 2021 conference in London. Everything was organised, flights and hotel room booked, I even ordered my mandatory “day 2 COVID-19 test” for UK. But a few hours before my flight to London, the Swiss government changed the entry requirements: travellers from United Kingdom must stay in quarantine for 10 days because of the new coronavirus variant. The rule was revoked a few days later, but at this point in time, I decided to cancel my trip to London. Very sad, because I was really looking forward to meet many good colleagues again in London. At least, the UKOUG team made it possible that I could present my session via Zoom to the audience sitting in a conference room. Thanks for that!

Happy New Year to my Blog Readers

Although the read statistics on my blog have decreased a little bit this year (my fault, if I don’t write anything!), I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the loyal readers of my blog. I wish you all a happy and healthy new year. Hopefully, I will find more time in 2022 to write new and interesting blog posts about Oracle databases, data warehouses, performance tuning, data vault and other interesting subjects.