Well, I have arrived, strangely enough, as the first person wearing a press badge (the security person said so) at the Oracle press center here in San Francisco and was shocked to find that, instead of the dozens of Apple iMac G5s there are nothing but Wintel machines, row upon row of unlit black ViewSonic monitors, like some war cemetery.
From Latvia, there are some 15 or 20 people here, up from zero in December (or maybe there was one guy). We all traveled together, drank beer at Newark Airport, then sat on some legroomless Continental Airlines flight to San Francisco.
The folks are mostly from state institutions for the simple reason that, by Oracle standards, Latvenergo, Latvia's biggest company, is just barely medium-sized. IT Alise, Lattelekom, Moebius, the State Social Insurance, etc. are represented. More, perhaps, on them later. Certainly it makes my day job easier, I can try to get a Latvian visitor angle from these people.
A second journalist has appeared in the press room, a guy from Slovenia. We new EU people are the early birds, I guess.
Some weird stuff-- Larry Ellison seems to have dragged his racing yacht -- the real thing-- into the lobby of the building where the press room and the main event auditorium are. They must have taken a wall down to get the thing --with no mast, of course-- in the door. Well, I guess it takes a strong personality to build up a company like this.
Information to look for -- the Siebel acquisition. Seems the snake is eating while stil bulging with PeopleSoft. Also looks like there is more of a business/user oriented slant to the whole thing, not so much techie stuff as Information Empowers, the slogan of a lot of the PR materials. So there should be a good business angle, how all this stuff makes one do better, more efficient business, which I have always believed is a no-brainer as far as understanding what IT is all about. But tell it to some people in Latvian journalism...
I guess this is enough jet-lagged rambling and raving. Later...