Thursday, June 9, 2011

No longer silo-ed!

In the days leading up to the HP Discover event I caught up with Thomas Burg and we discussed what we thought the highlights might be – and not surprisingly, we kept our fingers crossed over how prominent a role NonStop will play…

For the past couple of days I have enjoyed the company of comForte’s CTO, Thomas Burg, as he passed through town on his way to Las Vegas. Like many within the NonStop community, the conversation frequently turned to expectations for the upcoming HP Discover 2011, the annual “big tent” marketing event for HP’s enterprise product lines.

Paging through the HP Discover web site, the banners across the top of the page informed me of how the event would feature a number of programs, including Application Transformation (a reference that includes Modernization, and a reoccurring theme of these posts to comForte Lounge), Converged Infrastructure (an acknowledgement of the transformation that will occur with modernization), Enterprise Security (again, a topic that quickly draws Thomas into a discussions), Information Optimization, and Hybrid Delivery.

With little else to add to these last two items, as all HP has provided by way of bylines is “Optimize!” and “Deliver!.” I am expecting much more will be revealed at the conference – perhaps even a demo. However, this list of programs certainly builds on last years “Converge! Transform! Innovate!” and suggests that there’s more substance now than just the rhetoric we all heard a year ago.

The upside of holding a marketing event where more than NonStop is on show didn’t escape Burg’s attention either. “I am personally excited by the event becoming more and more cross-platform. There are a couple of sessions which talk about enterprise-security and enterprise architecture which I hope to be able to attend,” Burg informed me before adding “many of our products are about exactly what CI is about– better integrating the NonStop into the larger enterprise.”

There’s much that will be different, although NonStop participants will still be fated as in former times. As Burg discussed with me over coffee “we are supporting the event by having a booth, and we will be curious about how this will all pan out. We will also have a customer dinner that has attracted good participation, the usual mix of sales and prospect meetings and already (I have the sense that) we expect everyone from comForte to be busy”.

Annual global gatherings of the NonStop community have been held for more than 25 years. For decades these gatherings were the place to go to network, to hear of plans for future NonStop products, and to have the opportunity to describe ideas and requirements to the many NonStop development groups from the primary vendor as well as to the many third party vendors participating. Yes, we all recall the times Jimmy would simply throw his credit card on the bar to keep the flow of ideas coming!

Today we no longer have Tandem, but instead we have the open platform we call NonStop, and it’s clearly a participant in the hybrid delivery program just as it is in application transformation, converged infrastructure and enterprise security. When it was first proposed that user groups combine and support a single enterprise-oriented event, it was under the banner of better understanding what other users were doing, while giving NonStop adherents an opportunity to explain the benefits from deploying mission-critical applications on NonStop.

Leaving the event there will be attendees departing who will have been surprised by what they heard, with others perhaps somewhat anxious about the possible fall-out. Somehow, I have a sense that the ante has been upped this year – it’s no longer a luxury to explore what other platforms provide but a necessity.

The future of NonStop is moving beyond its former image as a specialty, enterprise, “silo”. It has its future tied to converged infrastructure and hybrid delivery, foreshadowing even greater product integration to come. But, of course, more about this in my post next week.

I hope you enjoyed the event and I trust you all enjoyed Sir Paul!

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