Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Local News | More snow, then rain, to be followed by possible urban flooding | Seattle Times Newspaper

Our kids are eagerly waiting for some snow here in the Heidelberg area. We just noticed today that in our previous home area in Seattle there's probably be more than enough:
"We're likely going to see more snow tonight, and when things warm up later this week, there's a good chance of urban flooding as rain and melting snow overwhelm clogged or frozen storm drains"

wisest German

Congratulations!
Germany's popular leader: Helmut Schmidt turns 90

Helmut Schmidt is a truly remarkable person and leader.
Unbelievable - where does he take his energy from to work still as hard as he does at his age?

Sunday, December 07, 2008

English-challenged President Bush speaks with forked tongue

English-challenged President Bush speaks with forked tongue:
"While it is understandable that a commander in chief would not want to appear weak in the middle of a war, there are ways to defend and lead the nation while acknowledging the hard truth. To say otherwise is to believe the only way to lead is to mislead."
What went wrong after the war that went wrong ...

Monday, September 15, 2008

Greed is good except when it isn't

I wonder what's next in terms of news from the financial market and whether or not this will have any impact on the behavior of some of the key contributors to this mess?

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Google Chrome and Google Bookmarks

You know, the bookmarks are my main complaint so far. I use Google Bookmarks with the GMarks firefox plugin, and it's really annoying that I cannot access those with a browser FROM Google.

They should have used Google Bookmarks instead of a local bookmark archive.

Friday, July 25, 2008

OBAMAFEST

"What the hell is going on," muttered one bewildered expat, turning around and around in a sea of flags and fondness. "They're supposed to hate us here."

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Titelanwärter Niederlande: Revolution in Orange - Sport - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

So muss man spielen, wenn man Europameister werden will:
Direktes Spiel, ein starkes Kollektiv, schnelle Angriffe über die Flügel: Die Niederlande demonstrieren Europa, wie moderner Fußball funktioniert. Eine Abkehr von der bislang praktizierten Spielphilosophie ist der Schlüssel zum Erfolg. Wer kann diesen Sturmlauf noch stoppen?
Titelanwärter Niederlande: Revolution in Orange - Sport - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

War ein tolles Spiel gestern - ich tippe auf die Holländer als kommender Champion.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Bashing SAP, Oracle and Other 'Stackers' | The Intelligent Enterprise Blog

As usual: Bruce cuts right to the chase:
The real reason for Jim to be cranky about the Stackers is that they do have a stack — an SOA stack — that BPM rides on top of. The pureplay BPM vendors — our former term for the non-Stackers — don't, and as BPM moves to the enterprise, customers increasingly want one. The non-Stackers say, we have a UDDI browser, just layer our BPM on top of any SOA stack. But that is apparently a hard sell.
Bashing SAP, Oracle and Other 'Stackers' | The Intelligent Enterprise Blog

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Just returned

We spent a very relaxing couple of weeks in Plakias, Crete.













Please stay tuned - planning to upload a few more shots soon.
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Review: SAPPHIRE 2008 - Where SAP is heading to… | ARIS BPM Blog

We certainly like this feedback:
I was impressed by the live demos, especially by the given demo of the future SAP BPM offering within the SAP NetWeaver Composition Environment where Ian showed how to create a BPMN-based process-model by using the eclipse-based process composer that can be executed in the future within the new SAP process server. By offering this new technology SAP moves a step further towards a BPMS vendor that enables customers to create executable processes without coding or developing efforts just by using existing enterprise service. The combination of shipped and existing services of ESR with the possibility to create fast-term changeable executable processes based on models will be a very positive step towards a flexible and easy to adopt process execution.
Review: SAPPHIRE 2008 - Where SAP is heading to… | ARIS BPM Blog

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Gone fishing ...

SAP CEOs preach networks, collaboration and BPM

"BPM is a journey, not a destination, and they've shown some solid steps on that journey," Greenbaum said. "One tough thing they have to do is to temper people's enthusiasm with some reality; but it's a great start. They're taking the right steps, but there's a long way to go to fully reach the vision of BPM."
SAP CEOs preach networks, collaboration and BPM

SAP CEOs preach networks, collaboration and BPM

"BPM is a journey, not a destination, and they've shown some solid steps on that journey," Greenbaum said. "One tough thing they have to do is to temper people's enthusiasm with some reality; but it's a great start. They're taking the right steps, but there's a long way to go to fully reach the vision of BPM."
SAP CEOs preach networks, collaboration and BPM

Friday, May 09, 2008

SAPPHIRE: Wolfgang Hilpert on SAP BPM | The Intelligent Enterprise Blog

Sapphire was much more fun this year ...
...funnily enough, just after I attended Ginger Gatling's session this morning, I had lunch in the press area, and when I mentioned that I'd seen the session on the new SAP BPM, three pairs of ears at the table swiveled around. These three, who I didn't know (nametags, unfortunately, hang below the level of the table when seated), gave me a light grilling on my opinions of what I had seen;
SAPPHIRE: Wolfgang Hilpert on SAP BPM | The Intelligent Enterprise Blog
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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

No sugar-coating, please!

Too bad MSFT's CEO just doesn't say: "Sorry, we were wrong with our strategy for Vista!"

In SteveB's words:
"A very important piece of work and I think we did a lot of things right and I think we have a lot of things we need to learn from," Ballmer continued. "Certainly, you never want to let five years go between releases and we just sort of kiss that stone and move on. Because, it turns out, many things become problematic when you have those long release cycles. The design point, what you should be targeting. We can't ever let that happen again. We have some things that we can't just set the dial back, but I think people wish we could."
Tech Tracks | Microsoft's Ballmer gives unvarnished take on Windows, online businesses | Seattle Times Newspaper Blog

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Matching maps

Not sure whether this map


matches with the locations of the visitors of this site ...

Friday, March 28, 2008

Hamburg Airport

Just returned from a relaxing Easter break in my home town. We took the kids to enjoy a unique view of the Hamburg Airport that already fascinated me when I was at their age:
The Airport Model of Hamburg Airport on a scale of 1:500 is the only one of its kind in the world; it provides a comprehensive insight into the entire airport grounds, clearance and flight operations and the Lufthansa Technik base.
Hamburg Airport

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Baden Baden

Spent the day in Baden-Baden. It does have quite some really nice areas! Not sure I wanted to live there, though ...
Picasa Web Albums - whilpert - 2008_03_09_Ba... - IMG_3137.JPG


We were quite impressed by the ruins of the old castle up on the hill overlooking the city and the Rhine river valley.




Sunday, February 17, 2008

Schulzeitverkürzung: Ein pädagogisches Desaster | ZEIT online

Die Bundesrepublik ist nicht reich an Beispielen für Reformen, die kassiert wurden, weil sie nichts verbesserten. Aber wenn jemals in einer politischen Einzelfrage eine Umkehr, ein Einsehen bei den politisch Verantwortlichen nötig (und möglich!) war, dann jetzt – manchmal ist der einzige Weg nach vorn ein Schritt zurück.
Schulzeitverkürzung: Ein pädagogisches Desaster | ZEIT online

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Saturday, February 09, 2008

BPM in a Large-Scale Packaged Application Context

BPM in a Large-Scale Packaged Application Context
Did the first public Demo of Galaxy at a non-SAP event. Went quite well. At least I enjoyed showing it on stage.
I am still struggling with this city, though.

Now I am actually stuck in Vegas for an extra day. Oh well!

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Friday, February 08, 2008

Turbo-Abitur: Gymnasiasten ächzen unter der Stundenlast - SchulSPIEGEL - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

Turbo-Abitur: Gymnasiasten ächzen unter der Stundenlast - SchulSPIEGEL - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "'Jetzt müssen die Lehrpläne entrümpelt werden. Die Zahl der Unterrichtsstunden muss ein wenig verringert werden".

Wohl wahr. Es wird Zeit, dass sich da endlich mal etwas tut. Oder muss erst eine weitere Pisa-Hysterie-Welle kommen, um entsprechenden Problemdruck bei den Entscheidungsträgern zu entfalten?

Monday, February 04, 2008

A Giant Bid That Shows How Tired the Giant Is - New York Times

Having failed to challenge Google where it matters most — in online advertising — it has been reduced to bulking up by buying Google’s nearest but still distant competitor. In many ways, the company has become exactly what Bill Gates used to fear the most — sluggish, bureaucratic, slow to respond to new forms of competition — just as I.B.M. was when Microsoft convinced that era’s tech behemoth to use Microsoft’s operating system in its new personal computer.
(...)
Here we are nearly 27 years later, and Microsoft’s core product is still its operating system, now called Windows — that and its suite of applications, called Office, that run on Windows. They generate billions of dollars annually for the company. The most recent version of Windows, released almost exactly a year ago, has already been installed in 100 million computers. Yet in technology, 27 years is a lifetime, and there is a powerful sense that while it has spent enormous effort over the years protecting its monopoly, the world has passed it by. In particular, the technology world now centers on the Internet, where Google reigns supreme, and Microsoft has never succeeded in making serious inroads.
(...)

Besides, the old strategies that once worked so well for Microsoft — strategies that worked when the world still revolved around Windows — have no place in this new world. I

(...)

Today, Microsoft lacks both the weaponry and the nimbleness to compete with Google. Its operating system monopoly gives it no advantages in this battle. People can use Microsoft’s operating system and browser to get to the Internet — and to Google — or they can use Apple’s. It truly doesn’t matter. Meanwhile, with every new Internet fad, like the current frenzy over social networking, Microsoft is invariably caught flat-footed and has to race to just get a foot in the game. But that’s always the way it is when companies get big — and it is why real innovation always comes from small companies that don’t have a predetermined mind-set, or monopoly profits to protect."

A Giant Bid That Shows How Tired the Giant Is - New York Times

It is amazing that despite all the talks about big goals, about "finding the next billion $ market opportunity for Microsoft" - I experienced strong tendency to keep change out ... and not that much willingness to explore new ways doing business in order to reach new targets.

As impressive as Microsoft's position in operating systems and office applications is, it seems like this success also provides a trap for the company that just doesn't seem to find an effective way driving a substantial enough level of market innovations in adjacent or new markets.

I am wondering how this bid plays out. Plus: if this merger really happens - will it play out as a turning point for Microsoft that doesn't just add new people, customers and lines of code to their business - but also new ways of driving innovation?

Trip to Half Moon Bay

Picasa Web Albums - whilpert - 2008_02_03_Ha... - Image016.jpg
While in the area, we had a great trip to the Half Moon Bay today.
Thanks, Martina and Amir!

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Yahoo-Übernahme: Warum Fusionen floppen - drei Lektionen für Microsoft - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

Yahoo-Übernahme: Warum Fusionen floppen - drei Lektionen für Microsoft - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "Viele der richtig guten Köpfe von Yahoo sind nämlich bereits zu Google und anderen Konkurrenten geflüchtet."

Cicero - Magazin für politische Kultur

Cicero - Magazin für politische Kultur:
"Was die Angelegenheit so heikel macht: Es sind die Besten und Jüngsten, die genug haben und gehen. Im Gegensatz zu den Auswanderungswellen des 19. Jahrhunderts verlassen nicht etwa Analphabeten, Bauern und verzweifelte Arbeiter das Land. Wir erleben keine Elendsflucht, sondern einen Exodus des gebildeten Mittelstands. Das Durchschnittsalter unserer Auswanderer beträgt 32 Jahre, es sind junge Ärzte und Ingenieure, Wissenschaftler und Facharbeiter, Handwerker, Techniker und ehrgeizige Dienstleister. Nach Angaben der OECD verliert derzeit kein anderer Staat so viele Akademiker."

Das ist wirklich beunruhigend!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Electric Car Acid Test

On Jan. 21, Agassi, Olmert, Peres, and Ghosn unveiled the novel project, under which Agassi's Silicon Valley company, Better Place, will sell electric cars and build a network of locations where drivers can charge and replace batteries.
The Electric Car Acid Test

Fascinating to watch this!
Had the chance to interact regularly with Shai for a little over a year before he left SAP. If someone can meet this considerable challenge, Shai certainly has the drive needed to do so.

vowe dot net :: Have things returned to normal? Yes, they have.

From my own experience, Americans focus more on the positive things than Germans do. They try to find the good in everything. You will often hear words like outstanding, best in class, award winning, awesome and so on. If you do that in German, your messages will effectively be filtered. Germans in contrast often focus on the deficiencies. You can't solve a problem without identifying it first. :-)
vowe dot net :: Have things returned to normal? Yes, they have.

Great observation, Volker!

Having worked in the U.S. for several years and working now back in Germany, however, on a multi-national team, I can confirm this observation literally on a daily basis.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Better Insight for Business Decisions

But despite all of the rearchitecting SAP has done for SOA, it still doesn't have explicit process management. The company is beginning to preview and demo a new product called Galaxy, which is the company's new explicit process management technology,
Q&A: Gartner's Janelle Hill on the Future of BPM, SOA and Enterprise Apps > > Intelligent Enterprise: Better Insight for Business Decisions

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Thursday, January 10, 2008

A galaxy of side-by-side innovation

On the NetWeaver front, the most exciting news was the new business process management (BPM) suite. Code-named Galaxy, the BPM products are part of the NetWeaver Composition Environment. The tools include a process composer, process server, web editor, rule builder, rule management, rule analytics, and a rule engine. Galaxy will be part of the core NetWeaver platform and will be used for SAP Business Suite, SAP All-in-One, and SAP Business ByDesign.
ERP/SCM: 24 Hours With SAP

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Saturday, January 05, 2008

Will BPM help fighting back a recession and increasing trust in 2008?

Conventional wisdom tells that companies could rather be expected to invest in new IT tools and concepts such as BPM when their budgets are on expansion during an economic uptake. Let's see whether Louis Columbus prediction turns out right that BPM will help spending the marketing funs more wisely. I certainly would hope so!
4. Channel management apps add the ability to audit marketing strategies past the department to the role level. There's an interesting undercurrent in many marketing departments regarding the use of marketing audits to evaluate the performance of initiatives, strategies and programs.
As BPM (business process management) apps become more pervasive, their use in customer-facing strategies will significantly increase. Chief marketing officers are seeking solutions to tying together process performance to marketing strategy results, so the question can be answered "So is the process or the strategy more or less effective and why?" An economic downturn would just hasten this happening as accountability will go up fast.
CRM News: Business Intelligence: Predictions 2008: Fighting Back a Recession and Increasing Trust

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Thursday, January 03, 2008

News from the slope

After ice-skating yesterday, we decided it was time to go cross-country skiing and sledding today. We went to a small village called Kaltenbronn - about an hour away from Heidelberg and more than 900 m above sea level.
Once we got above the 700 m we started to see enough of the white stuff today to make the kids happy ...


Julian tried cross-country skiing for the first time today. I was amazed about how well he did.

Afterwards we took the sled out - from there it went downhill ...



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Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Happy New Year!

We wish you a happy and healthy New Year 2008. Pauline, Julian and I tried our luck for this year already on a rather slippery surface: we went ice-skating arena in Heddesheim.
As much as I tried to stay ahead of the crowd - no chance, the kids were passing easily me pretty much on each round ... Pauline did so even with style - I don't think she fell even once. Her little brother tested the firmness of the ice with his back a bunch of times ...
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