While last week's Interop event in Las Vegas showcased a wide range of innovative enterprise technologies including mobility, WAN optimization, security, storage, smartphones, data center infrastructure, servers, and more, the biggest CIO-level activity was centered around cloud computing, whose acceptance and potential are growing rapidly, and virtualization, which has already become a cornerstone in 21st-century enterprise IT strategy.Faced with tighter budgets and the relentless charter to find ways to do more with less, CIOs today are pushing harder than ever on their IT vendors and partners to help them uncover innovative approaches and technologies that (a) let them replace old, brittle, and expensive infrastructure with new gear that's less expensive and is built for openness, speed, and reliability, and (b) give them new capabilities and growth potential in the online-driven global economy.
An entire keynote session was devoted to hearing top executives from Hewlett-Packard, IBM, and SAP describe their cloud-computing strategies and progress, while VMware took the grand prize in the "Best of Interop" competition with its vSphere 4. Sessions devoted to cloud security, applications, obstacles, and new approaches were packed throughout the event, and attendees could sense within these broad discussions a tipping point beyond which cloud computing will stop being seen as an unproven or rogue-ish technology, and will instead be viewed as a mainstream must-have for companies looking to fulfill that "do more with less" charter.
To help capture some of that overall buzz from the show, my esteemed colleague Alex Wolfe and I walked the floor and chatted with a range of vendors and attendees and then summarized some of our CIO-level findings in a brief video clip from the show floor. All credit for the utility of this clip go to cameraman/producer/moderator Wolfe, and any criticism must be aimed at the guy doing the on-screen talking. Here's the video: