Aug 01 2008

48 Hours in the Life of a Business Objects Trainer

Categories: General Dave Rathbun @ 6:41 pm

As I write this I am just getting ready to welcome my students back for day 2 of the Advanced Designer course. How did I get here? It’s an interesting story. Or maybe it’s not, you get to decide. :)

I have been assigned essentially full time to one particular client for quite a while. We are in the middle of pulling together the first release of a brand new universe, and one that has some particularly complex challenges due to hierarchical data. So my time is already fully allocated. Yet I got a call last week from my boss who informed me that I would need to teach a training class this week. :shock: It happens… our web site contains the full training class schedule and sometimes the classes fill up and sometimes they don’t. If they all fill up we sometimes run short on trainers and I have to fill in. But I’m still responsible for meeting my client delivery dates too. :lol: So here’s what the last 48 hours has been like.

Wednesday night

  • 9:30 pm: Worked on project universe and cussed about the weirdness of the hierarchical data that I am having to deal with. Cussed a lot, actually.
  • 11:00 pm: Reviewing the first half of the new Advanced Designer course material
  • 1:30 am: Go to bed

Thursday morning

  • 6:00 am: Up early to head down to the office early in order to make sure that the training room computers are all ready to go
  • 6:35 am: Talk to the security guard because my key card doesn’t let me in to your new training rooms. He can’t help me because of building policy, so I have to wait a bit.
  • 6:50 am: Another security guard comes by and verifies who I am and lets me into the room
  • 7am: Penny arrives (one of our primary Integra trainers) with donuts, a key to the room, and the time to make sure that all of the computers are set up for today’s class. (Thanks Penny!)
  • 8am: Students start to arrive
  • 8:30am: Class is supposed to start, but we’re one person short. We wait about 10 minutes and then we have our full class.
  • 10:30-ish: We take our first break, and I realize that we’ve been going for two hours and I’m only half-way through the first chapter. (It’s supposed to take 2 hours.) I decide it’s okay because we have covered a lot of extra material that the students seem to appreciate because they’re asking great questions.
  • 11:45-ish: We break for lunch. I stay in the room because I’m going to log on to my client’s VPN and work more on my universe. More cussing ensues.
  • 1:00 pm: Students return from lunch, and one of them comments about the fact that they really feel they’re getting good information from the class. This makes me feel really good since we’re not following the material. Well, we are some, but not exactly. I’m using it more as a “framework” or “suggestion” for course material rather than following it page by page. I am glad that they feel they’re getting an appropriate value.
  • 2:00 pm-ish: We’re getting a strange “Incompatible Combination of Objects” error from the course universe. Irritation ensues. I look quickly at the most obvious things, but can’t find the reason for the error. I suspect a conflict between the contexts and the @Aggregate_Aware settings in the universe but don’t have the time in the middle of class to figure it out.
  • 3:00 pm-ish: We’re now back on track as far as time, since one of the chapters in the Advanced Designer guide lists a bunch of parameters and goes into great detail to explain them. Rather than read page-by-page I suggest that this chapter is a great reference for future use, I pick about 3 of the parameters (like JOIN_BY_SQL and ANSI91) to discuss in detail, then we move on.
  • 4:30 pm: We’re done for the day as we’ve just finished a chapter and it’s a great place to stop.
  • 5:30 pm: After taking care of a few things from the office (confirming my keycard works now, checking in on BOB, talking to my boss, cleaning out (eating) the last donut from class) I head home.
  • 5:35 pm: Cuss because I stepped in gum in the parking lot and didn’t notice before I got in my truck. Now I have gum on the floor mat. Put some paper over it and let it stick so I don’t track it around anymore.
  • 6:00 pm: Dinner with the family, then some house stuff, followed by a Magic Treehouse book for bedtime.
  • 8:30 pm: Work on some blog posts for a while, then get the class manual out to review for tomorrow’s class. There’s a class on chasm / fan traps (I think I could teach that in my sleep), one on advanced prompts and LOV’s and stuff, and a chapter on external strategies. Who ever thought that strategies were worth an entire chapter in a training manual anyway?
  • 9:00 pm: Bake cookies to take to class tomorrow. Yes, if you come to a class that I teach, I feed you cookies. :-)
  • 9:30 pm: Eat a few cookies. Hey, they’re warm out of the oven, you expect me to ignore them?
  • 10:00 pm: Open my client universe and cuss some more. I’m really beginning to hate this data model. It works great for certain things but doesn’t fit the report structure.
  • 11:30 pm: Browse a few boards, and check for the new daily release of my favorite web comics and bloggers.
  • Midnight: Decide that it’s time to call it a day.

To be continued…

5 Responses to “48 Hours in the Life of a Business Objects Trainer”

  1. Comment by Sandor

    Cookies!

  2. Comment by Dave Rathbun

    Yes, cookies. :-D

    cookie picture

    And yes, I bake them myself. I constantly get asked if Ginger makes them for me, but these are my very own recipe and I definitely make them myself. Go ahead and taste one… they’re quite good. 8-)

  3. Comment by Marek

    Will there be a blog with a cookie recipe? :-)

  4. Comment by Dave Rathbun

    Yes :D

  5. Comment by Marek

    Thank you :-)

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