VMworld is a multifaceted experience, particularly for those of us where it may be the one time of the year where we can visit with far-flung friends and colleagues in the flesh. Indeed, the opportunity to have deep, stimulating discussions with other very smart people is perhaps the highlight of VMworld.
Yet there were plenty of vendor announcements, technical sessions, executive keynotes and product demonstrations. I summarized the major VMware news in this column at Channel Partners, where the Day One theme was data center infrastructure, while Day Two focused on the client: management, apps and security. Unlike recent VMworlds, CEO Pat Gelsinger was moved to the anchor leg of the keynote lineup where he served the role of elder statesman and visionary. As I pointed out in the column,
Gelsinger wrapped up the keynote lineup by summarizing industry trends and their implications for both IT and business. His message is that rapid-fire, cloud-like innovation is disrupting traditional business models and internal IT processes. His mantra is that organizations must “innovate like a startup, but deliver like an enterprise,” meaning that service creation must be agile, but service delivery must be bulletproof. Gelsinger also stressed that public cloud has evolved from the era of developer-driven, low-risk test/dev deployments to what he calls the “professional era of cloud,” meaning the need to pair cloud-service agility and delivery with mission-critical reliability and security.
I also tried to visually capture the flavor of VMworld. Channel Partners has a captioned slide show here, but I have a more extensive photo album on Flickr here. A more thoughtful analysis of VMworld themes in the context of larger industry trends is forthcoming. Watch MarkoInsights for details.