Well folks it's happened once again. A record breaking turn out with the largest Oracle Code event so far at Code Bogota.
Along with my colleagues from the Oracle Developer Community, Linda Bronson and Pablo Ciccarello plus the Events team and Oracle Bogota team I had the privilege in helping to setup and be a part of the event. As is with other code events, there were keynotes, the Developer Lounge with cool cloud demos, Hands-on-labs, IoT workshop, ZIP labs, plus a Women in Technology forum. Technology themes covered in the keynotes as well as the breakout sessions included Serverless, Chatbots, BlockChain, DevOps, Open Source, and Machine Learning. However, rather than talk just about technology, for this post I would like to share about Bogota, Columbia and it's people.
It is easy to default to stereotypes for places and people we are not familiar with. For many when you mention Columbia it is the perception of a Banana Republic, drug cartels, violent crime, and Pablo Escobar. The beauty of travel is it can help breakdown stereotypes. After having visited Bogota and met its local population nothing could be further from the truth. Columbia is the second largest country by population in South America after Brazil, with about 48 Million people. Bogota is a modern city of approximately 10 Million people and is surrounded by lush green mountains. From Mount Monserrate which you can get to by cable car you get an aerial view of the city which is truly breathtaking. The city does have some high rises but generally looks flat so it is aesthetically pleasing. Even though the weather forecast predicted rain for the three days we were there, surprisingly the weather was almost similar to the SF Bay area. However, as Bogota is at an elevation of almost 8,000 ft. it is definitely cooler and maybe more comparable to San Francisco climate wise. In the last 15 plus years the government has done a great job of ridding the city and surroundings from the cartels. There is still petty crime that you find in big cities, but other than that it is comfortable to walk around. The people are friendly and warm, and Bogota has tasty cuisine and of course coffee. It is very helpful to know Spanish, if not bring up your Translator App!
Back to Oracle Code Bogota. Not only was it a huge draw locally but developers came from other cities including Medellín and Cali. The demographics definitely leaned towards youth and you could feel the energy from them and the startup culture that many of them come from. Columbia has a rich history and culture and I am proud that Oracle chose it as a location for Oracle Code and help put it on the map. If you want to learn more about upcoming Oracle Code Events check us out.
Till our next Code event, adios.