I’m tapping out this post from the first leg of my vacation. Last week was the madness and wonder of VMworld US 2012 in San Francisco. This year was even more dense and I found my schedule filled with back to back customer meetings and capped by participating in a series of VMworld video segments .
Kicking off the week at VMworld included a panel for service providers (SPs). I was fortunate enough to represent VCE on the panel. The discussion when shifted to the concerns of the SP provided for some of the more memorable moments for me. In part, the SP points of view between EMC, Cisco, VMware, and VCE represent unique positions but also provide for the very interlock that VCE presents in the form of Vblock Systems.
One of the take aways is that for the SP there has to be an acknowledgement of the mix of those that are facilities based providers with wireline and wireless assets as well as those that are focused on the next generation data center. Said another way, the SP is a segment that can be contrasted with Enterprise. This also means that just as there is wondrous variation in the needs of the Enterprise there can be a strong case made for the unique needs of SPs.
The questions on the panel were polite and the ensuing dialog refreshingly devoid of drama – as if we all might be working together on solving real problems and providing real solutions. To contrast, much of what passes for ‘tech blog’ coverage these days is on par with tabloids. All apologies to legitimate tabloids. ;-)
Sometimes I felt like I was providing a summarization or pile on to the concepts eloquently provided by EMC, Cisco, and VMware. I did resist to use the word “ditto”. That said, my ability to cover certain topics was limited due to the timing of the dinner being on Sunday. cough Embargo! cough
Indeed, during subsequent meetings with customers after the dinner it was apparent that the messages and updates shared by VCE are on target. One might argue this is to be expected when you have the comfort and trust of sharing deeply technical information and providing a window into futures. Others might argue that there is a selection bias or other artificial weighting of discussion in the given sample. I’d simply argue that this has been the ongoing refinement of what VCE is and where Vblock fits into the conversation with the individuals and companies that will shape the next era of computing. For me, these customer meetings continue to be the gift that keeps on giving.
Speaking of gifts… as you might recall from my disclosure policy it is not possible for me to accept gifts that are of significant value. During my panel for the SP audience I was provided with a swag gift bag that apparently contained this:
Here’s the deal: I want to give YOU this brand new Apple TV.
Rules: Just write up a blog post of your own detailing what you think of as being the future of converged infrastructure. Tweet your blog post and add a /cc @qthrul to the end of your tweet.
UPDATE: Entries so far:
I’ll check back when I’m back from vacation on September 10. I’ll pick the best article and then we can arrange shipping details. Sorry international folks – this has to be limited to the US and Canda.
 this video outtake from a group of my peers gave me a huge laugh (semi-NSFW) and it highlights the amazing group camaraderie exhibited this week – huge props to Cisco’s Dominick Delfino (@domdelfino), VCE’s Jeramiah Dooley (@jdooley_clt) and EMC’s Chad Sakac (@sakacc) for really putting the button on this one.