Viva Las Vegas: See you at Dell EMC World 2017!

DellEMCWorld 2017 logoI’m excited to head back to Las Vegas again, this time for Dell EMC World 2017 taking place on 8-11 May! This will be my 6th trip to Las Vegas for Dell EMC World over the years, and as always I’ll try to get the most out of these 3,5 days of conference. Which might be something a bit different compared to the previous years.

Dutch Delegation

As always I’ll be flying in to Las Vegas a bit early. For one, it takes the sting out of the jetlag. Spending a day in the sun means I have to drink far less espresso to stay awake under artificial lighting at a conference.

On Sunday there’s also the Dutch Delegation trip, organized by Dell EMC Netherlands. All Dutch Dell EMC World attendees can sign up for it, and we usually go out for a trip in the neighborhood. Over the last years we went to see the Hoover Dam, Grand Canyon, went ziplining and did some other things. It’s an excellent way to get to know both EMC internals, partners and customers from the Netherlands, and connect with them over something else than technology. We usually have a few beers later in the evening as well.

Moving into the architecture sphere

Since starting my IT career at Open Line I’ve been in various post-sales roles implementing a broad range of EMC products. When systems would break down, I’d troubleshoot together with colleagues or EMC Support and get the stuff back online. Initially on a project basis, later in a contracting role, staying at customers for 1-2 years and fulfilling a mix of “run & maintain” and “tech refresh” roles.

Over the years, I’ve grown fond of the consulting side of IT. Not just focusing on one system, but also designing the solutions that keep the IT and business at a company running. Moving from post sales, to roadmaps and vision. IT is not just about technology, but also about business aspects and people. And it’s usually a whole heterogeneous ecosystems of different brands and products.

This desire to broader my view of IT and storage did not happen overnight. My manager at Open Line fanned that flame by pushing me out of my comfort zone. Then Stephen Foskett poured gasoline on that starting fire by inviting me to the Storage Field Days.

Or maybe it’s all a side effect of spotting my first gray hair… who really knows.

Dell EMC World 2017

So what does this mean for my trip to Dell EMC World 2017? I still want to know how products work, so you will still see me at various deep dive sessions and Hands-on-Labs. Open Line is implementing many Unity systems, so I will hunt for a nice deep dive break-out session.

Dell EMC World 2017 Hands on Lab

Two important streams in the world of storage are Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) and Server SANs. Dell EMC products that fall into these categories are ScaleIO and VXRail. I’m lacking sufficient knowledge on both systems, so I’ll try to attend a few sessions on those products.

The real thing I’m looking forward to is talking with people, discussing product placement, competitors, and architectures. I need to get my bearings on when a product is a good or a bad fit. There will be quite a few knowledgeable people at Dell EMC World, including a large number of Dell EMC Elect and Storage Field Day folks. I look forward to interacting with them, during sessions or over beers.

Since I’m part of the social media influencers group there will also be some interviews with Dell EMC product experts and leaders. I selected an interview about mid-range storages and another one about… Dell Financial Services. It has nothing to do with technology, which is why I want to learn something about it!

Time for the Oscars!

I would like to thank Dell for sponsoring my conference pass for Dell EMC World and booking my flight and hotel. The DellEMCWorld conference in Austin last October was quite impressive, especially with the additional access we got as social media influencers. Also thanks to Open Line for giving me the time to be away from the office

If you’re in Vegas during the week, come say hi to me or the other EMC Elect! If you’re Dutch: don’t forget to sign up for the Dutch Delegation. And if you can’t attend in person, stay tuned for a few blogs about my experiences and takes from this latest Dell EMC World edition.