IBM Connect Conference 2013

I attended the IBM Connect conferences earlier this week in Walt Disney World, Florida.   From the conference website:

"IBM Connect 2013. Familiar, yet with a whole new twist. We're connecting the long-standing Lotusphere and last year's Connect conferences — and making them one. IBM Connect combines the deep technical content that you’ve loved for 20 years with the learning you need to accelerate your move beyond social media to drive real business value with social and collaborative technologies."

As a long-time attender of Lotusphere, this year's IBM Connect conference (the new name for Lotusphere) didn't disappoint.  My perspectives:
  • Themes: Social, mobile and cloud (similar to last year).  However, unlike last year, more enterprises are deploying as opposed to planing
  • "They Might be Giants", a band from Brooklyn, NY opened the session with "Birdhouse in Your Soul."
  • Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt gave a great talk on hitRECORD, an open-collaborative multimedia production platform and changing the concept of "asset ownership."  As an example, he showed a short film, "The Man with a Turnip for a Head" and described how it was created from a virtual team of contributors.   
  • The consumer market is the new benchmark for work computing. Features borrowed from the consumer marketplace like activity feeds, video, "like" and file sharing are being integrated into IBM's products and taking a "mobile first" approach. A demo of a new secure file sharing capability in IBM Connections, similar to DropBox, received loud applause from the audience.
  • BlackBerry, the new name for Research in Motion, launched BlackBerry 10 on Wednesday and it was simulcast at the conference.  The consensus from attendees in sessions I attended was that IBM should focus on three mobile platforms: Apple iOS, Google Android and BlackBerry rather than focusing on Windows Phone.
  • Lotus Traveler 9 will ship in March and includes suppport for BlackBerry 10 as well as Windows Phone.  IBM Worklight also plans to add BlackBerry 10 support in March.  IBM Endpoint Manager supports BlackBerry 10 today.  IBM didn't announce when IBM Connections would support BlackBerry. 
  • My specific responsibilities at the conference included presenting, working at the IBM mobile booth at the solution showcase, meeting with clients, meeting with vendors, connecting with colleagues and attending sessions to expand my knowledge.  Many sessions were recorded and are available online via Livestream.
  • The mobile application for the conference could be improved.  For example, application didn't allow sessions to be added to my mobile calendar (the app has its own schedule), there was no linkage with social media (e.g. Twitter, FaceBook, Foursquare, etc.) so users could "check in" to a session and share their thoughts.  In addition, the mobile application didn't allow you to view/download the slides from the session.  Other conferences I have attended (e.g. Gartner Symposium) provided these capabilities.
  • The conference wi-fi while not great, was adequate.  However, the in-room broadband at the Disney Dolphin hotel (both wired and wireless) was very poor (< 1Mbps)
  • Photos of the event taken on my iPhone 5
  • My presentation:


Jeff Pinkston said…
Thanks for your overview, Chris. I look forward to reading your perspectives and recommendations on what to items to dig into at a deeper level.
Luis Benitez said…
Whoever did that demo is cool! :)
jtreills said…

I was at Connect as well. Really like this presentation. Any way I can get it?
Chris Pepin said…
Thanks Jim. Presentation is available on SlideShare: