I go on all the time about how honoured I am to be an ACE Director.
It is an honour and not just a 'boys club' where we all do exactly what Oracle tells us. I am always saddened when people say that, and the recent blog from Tim Hall and his follow up couldn't put it any better.
If you have ever been in any of my sessions you will know I certainly don't follow an Oracle script, but I am honest and I do know my stuff, and more importantly I share with the community. In a nutshell that is what the ACE Program is about.
OTN Fund the ACE program and that includes sponsoring things in the community to help spread the knowledge. They sponsor initiatives like RAC Attack which I am so pleased is with us again in Liverpool. You often hear about people travelling as an ACE Director and that being funded. Yes OTN do have a program where you can apply for travel and accommodation costs to present at a user group event or on an OTN tour. That funding is subject to many factors not least being the budget is finite and needs to help those groups who need to bring in speakers most. A few years back the decision was made that Collaborate, Kscope and UKOUG did not need that assistance, we are the biggest and best conferences worldwide and the best talent will chose to come here without any OTN assistance.
Do we miss out? I am sure there are a few people who would be able to attend who can't because of this ruling but I am hosting on behalf of OTN a dinner for those in the ACE Program speaking at UKOUG2014, mainly Tech14 but a few in Apps14, and there are 61 in total. 61 of the best Oracle brains and knowledge sharers outside of their own staff, who have chosen to submit, been selected and are speaking at UKOUG.
But 61 speakers is not all we have, we have so much amazing talent and Oracle Product Managers plus most importantly end users speaking at our event. I am really pleased to see the OakTable back, I love these guys and if they cant answer your database questions nobody can.
OTN are supporting our event, not just the dinner to say thank you to those ACEs speaking, but encouraging all speakers with their ongoing sponsorship of the Speaker Awards. I am also really pleased that Jennifer from OTN will be at UKOUG and I am sure she would love to answer any of your questions on the program.