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EMC World 2009 – Gin Blossoms Invade

EMC World 2009 – Day 1 Recap and Day 2 Plan

I arrived in Orlando last night for the kickoff of EMC World, the big EMC User’s Conference. EMC tells us that 7,000 people will be attending the conference this year, which is mostly focused on storage technology but also has a healthy amount of attention paid to enterprise content management. This year, I’m told that there will be a content management “conference in a conference” which amounts to grouping all the content managment sessions together in the same part of the convention center and grouping all the content management vendors together in the same part of the exhibitor’s hall. The portion of EMC’s customers that are Documentum-focused have been complaining for the past few years that they get lost in the massive hardware focus that is EMC’s primary business, so I’ll let you know if the conference in a conference works well this year.

When I checked in last night, I was immediately struck by the demographics of the attendees. They are probably 90%-95% male (more skewed than other IT conferences I’ve been to), aged 25-45, and without a lot of racial diversity. What is it about computer storage that attracts white dudes in their 30s?

Last night’s event was a concert by the Gin Blossoms. This is a band I know well but haven’t seen play live before. When I was in college, my band aspired to be just like the Gin Blossoms, and their album New Miserable Experience was in heavy rotation in my dorm room. I’m a sucker for a great pop-rock song with catchy melodies and harmony vocals, and that’s the Gin Blossom’s bread and butter. It was nice to see them play live, but you could tell that their hearts weren’t in it. Playing for a convention full of IT geeks that are primarily there for the free buffet is a long way from the club full of rabid fans they are used to. The lead singer tried to get the crowd engaged, but the energy was way off. In a normal gig, even if you are playing to only 100 people, it’s 100 people that stood in line to see you, and the energy of the room reflects that. Last night, there were 2,000 – 3,000 people at the event, but they were just there for something to do, and it showed in the vibe of the crowd.

I’m about to head out to the morning sessions. I’m planning to attend the following, so if you read this and want to find me, you’ll know where to look. My Monday is going to be all about understanding EMC’s current “pitch”. I’m pretty up to date on the technologies below, but I’m always interested in how EMC is packaging them and presenting them to the market.

  • MONDAY 8:30 – Fundamentals: Content Management and Archiving Product Overview
  • MONDAY 11:30 – What’s New with the EMC Documentum Platform
  • MONDAY 3:00 – EMC Documentum CenterStage: Bringing Enterprise Content Management to Everyone
  • MONDAY 4:30 – EMC Documentum 6.5 Architecture Overview

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