Dreamforce 2014 – A look back

It’s been a month now since I returned from Dreamforce. A month of attempting (rather unsuccessfully) to get caught up on missed sleep. A month of seeing Salesforce Community activity slow down some, a month of trying to remember all the priorities I had at work before I left for Dreamforce. It’s an ideal time to close out my Dreamforce experience with a brief summary of what I took away from it all.

1. The Salesforce Community still ROCKS! There were dozens and dozens of community-led sessions…and from all the conversations I was involved in, they were all well received by their respective audiences.

2. There will never, EVER be a ‘First Ever Admin Keynote’, but you can bet your last dollar that there will be a 2nd Annual Admin Keynote. (Safe Harbor applies here…remember, this blog is full of my opinion, and nothing more!)

3. The Developer Zone was cool, just like it has been before, but the Admin Zone took things up a notch, and put Admins on everyone’s radar. My prediction for Dreamforce 2015: an expanded Admin Zone – more space for Hero Booths, for conversation, for Theater Sessions, and yes, for coffee!

4. There’s even more focus on Analytics and Big Data. The Analytics Cloud and Project Wave…wow! Love the speed, robustness and flexibility of insights at the speed of thought!

5. A hackathon…done right. I had the pleasure of hanging out in the hackathon for a while simply observing and talking to people. Tons of awesome ideas & apps being built by plenty of great people. I’m thrilled that the prize money was spread out this year.

6. The Marc and Parker Q & A session – its a must attend. Having the opportunity to ask the founders a question is awesome, but what I think is even better is hearing them respond to the questions being asked. It solidifies the customer focus that salesforce.com has by demonstrating it from the top down!

So that’s my take on the highlights from Dreamforce 2014. I’d love to hear yours!

The Dreamforce Hackathon…from an outsiders point of view

So a certain person (who shall remain nameless) managed to get me into the Dreamforce Hackathon for a couple hours….it was quite the enlightening experience. I saw many things:

I saw Adam Seligman…live and in the flesh. I’ve been connected to him through Twitter and the Success Community for a few years, but never had the pleasure of shaking his hand, until now.

I saw Reid Carlberg…I’ve met him before, but it was great to see him again….same goes for Josh Birk.

I saw Pat Patterson…never had the pleasure in person, and can never say that about him again!

I saw April Nassi, but of course she’d be there! She’s the queen of the Developer Community!

But enough about people. That’s not what the Hackathon is about.

It’s about creativity and passion.

I saw plenty of that. There were dozens upon dozens of teams of developers coding away at what could become the next best thing since sliced bread. There were men and women of every shape, size, color and ethnic background, all striving towards the same goal…building a great App. It was an awesome thing to witness.

One other thing I noticed there, besides people eating and coding, coding and coding, sleeping and coding (or perhaps dreaming about coding) was another fine example of what the Salesforce community is all about. It’s people helping people, sharing ideas, sharing knowledge.

Sure, this is a competition, and a few people are going to win some serious cash, and others will just leave the Hackathon with a cool new App, and some sleep deprivation, but from the outside looking in, it’s all awesome, and has inspired me to dig into the world of the Developers.

One last thing, before I close out this post:

I hope the Dreamforce Hackathon continues for many years to come!