It's that time of the year where you (or more specifically I) reflect on the year gone by, and ponder over what lays ahead in the new year. What did I as a Community Manager do, what worked, what didn't, what were the highlights I'd like to remember. In no specific order, here are some semi-random thoughts.

 

  • With Oracle's focus on Cloud and  Developers our team got rebranded from the Oracle Technology Network (OTN) to the Oracle Developer Community. We got new swag, and our video interviews that we Community Managers do at events got branded to DevLive. Also our individual social and other channels got rebranded, eg OTN Systems Hub became Oracle Sys Dev, Database community became Oracle Database Developers and the Architect Middleware community became Arch Beat Dev. Besides the huge Java community, we now also have a JavaScript community followed by Open Source Communities in the making.
  • The developer.oracle.com site affectionately known as Dev.O has continued to become populated with all types of content from technology pages, videos, articles and more. We have an increased focus on different technology areas, from Database, Java to Containers and Microservices. For me specifically the focus became DevOps and now Container-Native.
  • 2017 was a year of many firsts, and for us as a team and company it was the first time to be doing a 21 City Oracle Code tour. Some of the code cities, San Francisco, Austin, Atlanta, Washington D.C. and New York were domestic. The rest of the cities were global, reaching across continents on which we as a team did a divide and conquer to share the travel. I won't enumerate all the cities, you can see those in the video.

  • We as Community Managers got to meet and interview luminaries who gave keynotes and speakers at the Code events that were livecast and later published on Youtube. Besides Oracle Code we participated in a lot of other conferences as well as user community meets.
  • On the advocacy side, the ACE program has grown a lot as have the Java Champions. We added a new category of Developer Champions

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which as its name indicates focuses on software developers (who have cloud expertise and a focus on technologies like Microservices, Containers, DevOps, Open Source technologies, and SQL/NoSQL databases). If you want more details on any of these programs please check out this blog post.

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  • Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne was another exciting milestone. The Oracle Developer Lounge was a ginormous space in the exhibit hall with all types of interesting demos to show Oracle Cloud by engaging the audience from the IoT Cloud Brewed Beer, 3D Builder Playground, Cloud Chatbot Robot, LEGO Mindstorms, CNC Light Sculpture, IoT Workshop, and my favorite, the Matrix themed BulletTime Video Ring.

    

  • Laura Ramsey and Yolande Poirier fellow community managers made a concerted effort to reach out to women in technology in Java and Database respectively as well as to the wider Women in Technology.
  • Oracle Code Online, went off without a hitch twice this year, and helped to reach all those of you online, who we couldn't meet at one of our physical events.
  • What didn't work for me? With all the Oracle Code and other conference planning of interviews, travel, and the follow-up, I fell behind on sending out the Systems Newsletter. Apologies upfront. I hope to start a fresh in the coming year.
  • Any New Year’s resolutions? Yeah a bunch, eat healthier, lose weight... but from a work standpoint, I hope to raise the bar in terms of the content I produce from videos, blogs, social media, articles and more. I am excited to have just recorded my first Podcast on DevOps with my colleague Bob Rhubart who has the number one rated Oracle podcast and hope to do more in the coming year. We will have more Oracle Code
  • It's hard to capture a year in a few bullet points, but I have to say thank  to you our audience of Developers, SysAdmins, DBAs, and all the other technical folks who consume the content we create and curate. I have to say thanks to Oracle, and a great team I work with (Laura Ramsey, Bob Rhubart, Yolande Poirier, Melissa Thorne, Jim Grisanzio, Linda Bronson, Martha Hess, Jennifer Nicholson, Vincent Mayers, Pablo Ciccarello, Christina Brashear Lori Lorusso and our fearless leader, Stephen Chin), this has been one of the best years of my life.
  • Final thought about community, the growth and size of a community is one way to measure it, but to me what is more meaningful is PES (Participation Engagement and Selflessness). Nothing better demonstrated this to me than the JavaOne 2017 Keynote where all the disparate members came together to give multiples skits and presentations centered around the Matrix theme.

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      The sum was greater than the parts, they were selfless and that is what community is all about. It reminds me of this beautiful quote by Hafiz,

 

“Even After all this time
The Sun never says to the Earth,
"You owe me."
Look, what happens with a love like that,
It lights the whole sky.”

 

I hope that both my team and I can not only meet, but exceed your expectations in the coming year. Please share how 2017 was for you as a developer, and what we can do to better serve you? Happy New year!