IBM Interconnect 2017 in Review

This week I have been out in Las Vegas for IBM’s Interconnect show, and I wanted to share my personal highlights.

The big topic of the week from my perspective was the focus on Blockchain. The technology seems to be moving from the fringes into the mainstream with more and more examples of real deployed use cases such as Maersk and Everledger coming to the fore.  As the Hyperledger code base matures and organizations deploy services on the V1.0 base, clients can start to see a path to adoption, rather then waiting until the hype subsides.

One of the other key themes of the week was the coverage of Open Source based technologies, my specific highlight was the announcement made by the Open Mainframe Project timed to coincide with Interconnect around the Project’s new members and  the plans for the summer intern programme.  The Project is  going from strength to strength, the session I presented with another IBMer (Jens Voekler) resulted in two prospective members approaching us at the end our presentation looking to join.

Another key area, for me at least, was the increasing market momentum around Mainframe based cloud deployments.  I presented 3 times on this topic, one of the sessions I was lucky enough to present with Guy Shone, who is regularly seen on the TV talking about economic issues. We presented on how CFO’s make the decision to move core workloads to the cloud.  For an independent write up of our session, check out what Jon Toigo had to say.

The final highlight for me was being invited to be a social influencer for the show and mix with other non-IBMers who shape, influence and build markets using social channels.  I got spend some time with Kevin Jackson, Dez Blanchfield and also got to meet with Mark Jeffries whose job it was to interview Will Smith the following day on the Monday keynote.  All of these influencers, to a man, were polite, engaging and willing to collaborate, which given their lofty followers counts, proves that notoriety does not have to equate to some of the personality traits we observe in other in other walks of life.

All in all it was a crazy, busy, rewarding week, and I look forward to Interconnect 2018.


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