Red Hat Summit was a great success with over 5,000 people attending, up from 4,300 last year.  In  a tough economy with strict expenses policies the norm, getting 5,000 to turn up in Boston for almost a week is no mean feat!  So why the buzz? Well, Open Source is going mainstream in data centres, over the last 20 years Linux has gone from an anti-movement to Windows to in most cases the platform of choice for modern business applications.

At the IBM booth at the conference it was a stream of attendees from numerous household names, yes there was the occasional weird hairdo and interesting shirt choice, but in the main it was a corporate audience looking for innovation.  Talking about the IBM stand, we had great foot traffic with lots of people fascinated by the z13 plexi glass edition, that was the centre piece.  Everyone who came by was intrigued to understand more about what and Enterprise Grade platform looks like in the flesh, and my colleague Dennis Wunder was tour guide in chief!!!

So what were the hot topics?  Apart from the mainframe, well Docker Containers and OpenStack seemed to dominate my discussions during the week.  It seems that Docker is the new darling of the industry and everyone is jumping on board.  Everything will be delivered in a container form and every vendor will support it seemed to be the general consensus.  IBM is no different with a large endorsement of Docker coming from the corporation this week.  Read more here:

http://venturebeat.com/2015/06/22/ibm-becomes-the-first-reseller-of-the-docker-trusted-registry-software/

For what IBM in the mainframe space is doing with Docker check out this great commentary from our good friends at ComparetheCloud:

http://www.comparethecloud.net/articles/now-its-docker-on-mainframes/

The other theme was OpenStack, this has now become the defacto standard for management and deployment in the Linux world.  Every vendor, ISV and client was talking about their deployment of the technology whilst at the conference, and I expect to see more coming in this space over the coming months both from the industry and IBM in particular.

If you want to check out what I had to say about the mainframe’s role in the Linux space then CRN seemed to have captured me best, so check it out here:

http://www.crn.com/news/data-center/video/300077267/ibm-z13-trumps-x86-public-cloud-on-price-and-performance.htm

All in all an exciting week, with some great announcements…