Earlier this week I had the pleasure of presenting a keynote talk (“Storage Industry Trends and Perspectives: Beyond Hype and Green Washing”) at the Dutch StorageExpo (produced by VNU Exhibitions Europe) event in Utrecht the Netherlands which was co-located in the ultra large Jaarbeurs congress center (e.g. convention center) along with concurrent shows for Linux, Security and networking making for a huge show and exhibition, almost a mini scaled down version of cebit or VMworld or EMCworld like event.
Congratulations and many thanks to Marloes van den Berg of VNU Exhibitions and her team who put together a fantastic and well attended event, not to mention their warm and gracious Dutch hospitality.
European shows and events are different than those in the U.S. in that at European events, the focus is more on meeting, building and maintaining relationships and less on “Uui Gui” demos or marketing sales pitches involving complex demos and technology displays found at many U.S. events.
Granted, their are indeed product demos and technology to look at and talk about, and rest assured, the conversations and discussions when involving technology get right to the point and often much more direct. There is also a more relaxed aspect as seen in the many booths or stands as they are called, many of which have bars that serve up coffee in the morning as well as snacks and other beverages (the Hienken in Holland is much better than what is shipped to the U.S.) over which to discuss and have conversations about various topics, issues and technolgies.
Many of the issues being faced by the Europeans are similar to those being faced by IT organizations in North America as well as elsewhere in the world including limits or issues around power, cooling, floor-space footprints, economics, doing more with less to boost productivity and enhance efficieinecy while sustaining business growth without impacting service delivery or service levels. BC/DR, data proteciton and data security, virtualizaiton were all topics of interest and points of discussions among others.
I had the opportunity to meet several new people both from IT organizations, vars or resellers, consultants, vendors and media along with putting a face to a name of people I had meet virtually in the past not to mention re-connect with others that I have known from the past whom it was great to have had a chance to re-connect with.
Thanks to all of those who attended both the key note session on Wednesday afternoon as well as to those who were at Monday’s all day seminar organized by Gert Brouwer or Brouwer consultancy in Nijkerk, I really enjoyed the conversations and perspectives of everyone I had a chance to meet with this past week and look forward to future conversations.
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