Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Welcome to NOT Orlando

IBM Connect, or Lotusphere, as us old people call it kicked off last night with the welcome reception and today with the Opening General Session.

This year we break from tradition to visit San Francisco instead of Orlando. Many traditions may not return, but thank God for Ephox and Aussie Night, and Mat. Disclaimer, IBM Champions are invited in advance and are loved by Ephox.

The usual cast of characters exist, like a Thanksgiving dinner, your business cousins, uncles and aunts and everyone in between are here to make the event entertaining, bewildering, shocking and er, imbibe a little too much at times.

Sponsors, exhibitors and attendees have a decent size space to work with and the estimated 2,000 people make everything seem full without crowding. Hopefully for the exhibitors it is a good show.

We saw and heard quite a few things today, many I will not get correct but here goes:

Badges? Yes, no more certification requirements from IBM, but now you need badges of the virtual kind. No news how many badges it takes to be able to sell licenses, but I am sure IBM had thought of these things. Hope my New Way to Learn badge does something.

Lotus IBM Notes and Domino we were told are road mapped through 2021.

Evidently Sametime is getting a  life extension as well but details were less definitive.

IBM Connections 6.0 will be out in a quarter or 2.

Pink, is the code name for Connections NEXT and it looks to augment and extends on where the platform is today, but without the Websphere and other things, Keep watching this space.

The UX lab is all about Connections and Verse, go give them your input in exchange for some tickets to win prizes of your choosing.

Julian Robicheaux was named the third Lifetime IBM Champion and him and Theo and Gab were part of the musical mix of live dj/musician and Watson song make up.

Some cool Oblong video meetings which showcased the drag and drop functions in Watson Workspace.

Box Relay was on screen in a demo. Described as a "workflow solution", gee I wonder where I might have heard hat term previously.

Unlimited mail sync is now or will be an option for search purposes on phones.

Watson Workspace is growing, expanding, look for a new app store from IBM (I think) as Business Partners write apps for it. In my discussion with some IBMers it appears the technical part is not the problem, the ideas or workflow plans or just applications that are business necessary are the key. SO get thinking people.

Saw many friends, a few customers, met new IBMers and other people that I only knew online and good thing we all wear badges so everyone knows each other.

I agree with Wes Morgan, The Lost art of Troubleshooting is troubling issue in modern times.

The demo crew, led by Chris Crummey did all their own stunts live. Brave souls and a much better way to demo over past years with fake names, apps and such.

The Moscone center is nice, the staff are great and the wifi has been excellent.

Lots of partner solutions were shown in the OGS rather than just mentioned.

I registered as a client this year, I was surprised there were no invitations to talk or see anything from partners or vendors.

Only draw back is a dearth of charging stations and electrical outlets. Even the sun came out a bit today.

The other thing is, it is not Orlando. There is no one place everyone is hanging out. There is no running into people once you leave the Moscone center.

Yes you can follow people on various social media but that is not the same. Again on the plus side, the community is the community, even if we end up in 3-4 different locations in the evening.

Wednesday is my session at 1pm Room 2011 on Our Journey to a Cloud, see you all there.