It’s September and the tech-event machine is in full swing. I’ve been remarkably immune to the show-trail for a while, and will remain so until a trip to Barcelona in a few weeks, unless things change, as they so often do.
This year's event congestion got me wistfully thinking of my first tech-event: COMDEX. Yeah, that one time tech spectacle of a show. I’d never been to big tech event. Heck, I had never been to Las Vegas. My senior-counterpart left me (and his rental car) there about 6 hours after I arrived to deal with a family issue. And I remember doing whatever I could to stay just-this-side of becoming overwhelmed. Regardless, I loved seeing all the newest "stuff."
Of course, COMDEX is long gone. Storage and tech conferences come and go, and some major tech “stuff” events do continue to thrive, like the Consumer Electronics Show (CES.) But note the difference, that’s driven by consumer tech.
The problem with enterprise IT tech “stuff”-focused events is just that, they are too much about the “stuff.” How many Terabytes? How many megahertz? Is that fibre channel or iSCSI? Where’s that Infiniband corner? It all becomes industry people talking to each other.
Don't misunderstand... IT stuff matters. You need storage stuff. You need compute stuff. Networking stuff. Etc.
But since I’m not quite at George Carlin levels of “stuff” consciousness (Google it if you don’t have sensitive ears, it's terrific), I think we better move away from what doesn’t matter so much, and onto what does.
And this week’s tech events are a pretty big reminder that it’s not about the stuff. It’s about the data that all that stuff holds and the databases and applications that all that stuff powers. It's about simple deployment and adoption of business-changing technology platforms that support Digital Transformation.
Of course, two of the biggest vendors software platforms that hold and put data to work are having major events this week: Oracle, with Oracle Open World (OOW) and SAP, with SAP Tech Ed. Both events, while quite different are venerable institutions in our industry – because businesses depend on the software from both of them to run, grow and succeed.
So, you’re rightly thinking… “Great, HDS, you’re at these events to show off more stuff, eh?”
Well, no. And, a little bit of yes, of course.
At both shows, you’ll find us talking about customer outcomes and moving down the road to Digital Transformation, as much as about any technology. Though, there’s no doubt that there will be technology to talk about, the focus will be managing data and modernizing IT infrastructure.
Because it’s the use of that technology stuff to modernize IT operations and exploit the value of SAP and Oracle environments that is the key, because one of the clear effects of Digital Transformation is that IT needs to step-up it's game, fast. Business-as-usual IT isn’t going to be the way to survive, to perform as needed, or to manage the tidal wave of IoT data that will be on its way soon.
Modernizing Oracle IT infrastructure might mean getting to turn-key cloud solutions for Oracle database, Oracle E-business suite and flexibility to run other (i.e. non-Oracle) apps alongside for a very efficient use of your infrastructure. Hitachi Unified Compute Platform can help there, just as our services expertise and industry experience can. Getting to that type of consumption shows that IT is stepping up.
Maybe your Oracle modernization is more focused on consolidation of physical infrastructure through technologies like virtualization and using tools (like our DIET utility) to run Oracle environments at the highest performance with the highest utilization of their resources. That’s IT stepping up to become more efficient.
Maybe modernizing SAP means getting HANA deployed in a way to scale capacity and performance levels never expected, but soon to be required in an IoT world. Hitachi has proven we can deliver world-record performance and this is just the start. Having a scalable infrastructure ready to cope with massive growth? That’s IT stepping up to be future ready.
Perhaps it is rethinking which vendors are really able to cover all the needs you will have with your SAP deployment and inviting the right players to the table. When Gartner looked at which vendors customers should shortlist (log-in required) for HANA hardware selections, Hitachi was listed more than IBM, Lenovo or Cisco, and more than Dell and EMC combined. Choosing a partner that can match your changing needs is absolutely a way IT can step up.
So I hope you get a chance to talk to Hitachi Data Systems at these important industry events. You'll soon realize we’re not really there as Hitachi Data Systems. We’re there as part of Hitachi, a window into an industrial and IT technology partner than can help you in ways you might not have expected.
You may see Hitachi Data Systems, Hitachi Consulting, Hitachi Solutions, Oxya, Pentaho or one of our vertical business like Automotive, Rail or Medical Systems. But what you are getting is a view of how technology drives business. How platforms like Oracle or SAP HANA – when deployed in easily consumable, high performance and cost-effective manners - help provide a critical role in the web of IoT data that will power our customers into the future.
So ask about our IT stuff if you must. Because some of it is pretty inspirational.
But be sure to ask how we can help you step up to meet the needs of modernizing your infrastructure for Oracle and SAP. Because, "stuff" alone won’t answer the challenge of Digital Transformation.