What I Hope to Get out of Interop ITX - InformationWeek

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4/26/2017
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What I Hope to Get out of Interop ITX

IT consultant and blogger Andrew Froehlich outlines a full-week educational experience at the upcoming Interop ITX conference.

For many professionals in the IT industry, springtime designates an annual (or two, or three) pilgrimage to the Las Vegas desert in search of answers to our organizations' most tricky problems. While I too have made multiple visits to the Strip in search of IT guidance, this year designates the first time I'll be attending Interop ITX. Not only that, I'm also in the unique and fortunate position to be on this year’s Interop ITX Review Board.

That means I have an inside track on what to expect. Yet, because the conference spans such a wide range of keynote addresses, workshops and sessions, I can't be everywhere. So, I'd like to share what I hope to get out of my personal Interop ITX journey.

Even though there are  six unique learning tracks that cover the full IT Stack at Interop ITX this year, three of them really stick out to me. The track I'm interested in the most deals with cloud computing. While some of you may have had your fill of cloud topics over the past decade, I believe that things are just starting to get interesting in the world of cloud computing from an enterprise perspective. From a technical standpoint, sessions on how to deploy and manage container-deployed applications are high on my interest list. Topics on "cloud native" applications also are intriguing to me.

But Interop ITX sessions aren't only technical in nature either. There are plenty of sessions, keynotes and exhibitor discussions on how to stay relevant in IT where everything is moving to the cloud.

A second track -- and one that's likely to be on everyone’s shortlist -- deals with IT security. For this particular conference, my interest in IT security is largely strategic in nature. That's why I'm most interested in topics such as security skills shortages, high-level IoT security discussions and how to better manage a business’s overall data security risk levels. So, if you have the same IT security interests as I do, trust me when I say that Interop ITX is shaping up to be a great one.

The final track I'm personally interested in covers everything under the sun as it relates to IT infrastructure. While this track may not seem as alluring as the cloud and security tracks, Interop ITX has a ton of great new topics to dig into. There are quite a few things going on in the areas of wireless networking, IoT, automation and software defined networking that are on my radar -- and should be on yours too. Additionally, fans of infrastructure IT are in for some great industry  keynotes from the likes of Cisco, CA Technologies and FireEye.

Beyond tracks, I'm excited to step outside the sessions and keynotes to see practical demonstrations and exhibits that I can apply in the real world. I'll be looking to have in-depth conversations with experts on complex topics such as artificial intelligence, big data and emerging DevOps strategies. Conferences such as Interop ITX bring together the best and brightest in the most rapidly advancing IT fields, so I'm going to take advantage of the opportunity and try to get all my questions answered by industry experts.

As you can see, I plan to be plenty busy at this year's Interop ITX conference. But at the same time, I don't expect the conference to be all business. After all, this is Las Vegas. And what's a trip to Las Vegas without a little bit of fun? So, I hope to see you there. You can find me in a keynote, session, demo, exhibit floor -- or just possibly -- at a craps table from time to time.

Andrew has well over a decade of enterprise networking under his belt through his consulting practice, which specializes in enterprise network architectures and datacenter build-outs and prior experience at organizations such as State Farm Insurance, United Airlines and the ... View Full Bio
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