I believe technology can be exploited to greater levels than we have allowed. We are constrained by 20th century business models and ideas. Collectively, we need to move past technology for the sake of technology and truly focus on moving markets beyond the status quo!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Citrix Synergy – Setting the Bar for the 2010 Conference Season
It is official – the 2010 summer conference season is now underway beginning with #CitrixSynergy in San Francisco!

Citrix set the bar quite high for the 2010 conference season, Synergy was all about simplicity. And with the explosion of complexity in IT over the past decade, simplicity is exactly what everyone is craving.

Citrix clearly understands that while the cloud is great and interesting and a cost saver and every other adjective that has been attached to it, the cloud is not the only component of modern solutions. Citrix clearly and concisely identifies “virtualization + networking + cloud” to create synergies across the stack and deliver virtual computing enabling people to work where and how they desire. This is brilliant and yes, simple. Making things “simple” is painstakingly difficult, that is why so few technology vendors can articulate a clear and concise value proposition – simple is hard.

Citrix CEO Sets the Tone
Citrix CEO, Mark Templeton, is one of the most visionary CEOs in the industry. His discussions are always focused and designed to deliver a message that resonates well with every audience member. Attendees of Citrix Synergy were fortunate to hear Mark’s view of virtual computing during the daily keynote sessions.

Within the first 10 seconds of taking the stage, Mark Templeton graciously thanked the Citrix customers. This may seem trite and expected, but the thank you was sincere and the audience knew it. This is in sharp contrast to what is on display at competitive conferences.

Each day was laser focused on one of two topics:
1. Virtual workstyle
2. Virtual datacenter

For each of these two topics partners and customers were prominently featured. Citrix highlighted an entire ecosystem of solutions that focus on “workshifiting” – putting work where you want it to be and move to a more optimal place.

The notion of “workshifting” was the backdrop for the keynote sessions and the entire conference. During the keynote focused on virtual workstyle, Mark made several observations that show why Citrix is able to deliver such innovative solutions.

Some of the key takeaway points about virtual workstyle were:

Citrix: There is no such thing as a technology project, only business projects that require technology.

voke commentary: This statement clearly demonstrates how Citrix thinks about the solutions they deliver. The company focuses on enabling business and making it easier for the business to work. This logic is in direct contrast to so many of today’s software companies. This simplicity is by design and a hallmark of Citrix discussions and solutions.

Citrix: Devices do not matter – we have screen size options depending upon our needs at a particular point. We have large screens for creation and empowerment, small screens for alerting us or “snacking” on information, and medium screens for entertainment and education.

voke commentary: Citrix makes the software that enables users to focus on on the experience of what they are doing. The ability to have access to your own information when, where, and how it is needed has been the goal for a number of years, we are finally seeing this achieved through today’s well behaved technology.

Citrix: BYOC (Bring Your Own Computer) goes mainstream. Organizations do not want to own the physical hardware asset; they do own the data and IP. The BYOC concept helps organizations attract talent seeking intellectually stimulating environments.

voke commentary: BYOC is a smart concept that lets organizations focus on what really matters – being competitive in their market segment.

Citrix and Microsoft: The Ultimate Power Couple
The big highlight was the strong partnership between Citrix and Microsoft. A presentation by Brad Anderson, Microsoft corporate vice president of the Management and Services Division revealed how the partnership between the two companies is influencing desktop virtualization. Microsoft’s strong working relationship with Citrix is showing the industry that the tried and true quintessential software vendor is taking advantage of what Citrix has learned over the past 20 years about desktop virtualization and adapting to the world of virtualized computing.

The Microsoft presentation may have been the most important component of the Synergy event. Microsoft and Citrix make a compelling power couple that can really shape the way we use and view not just computing but virtualized computing. This is truly a partnership to watch.

The Synergy conference was a great start to conference season and really set the stage for the conference season. As an analyst, I am fortunate to attend the most important and influential technology events each and every year. If you are unable to attend the conferences, check back for blog posts on the events of the summer. Follow us on Twitter at
www.twitter.com/vokeinc, and at the end of conference season, tune in to the voke webcast channel to get our commentary and analysis of all the conferences and the insight behind the Tweets.

Happy conference season.

t

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