Guest Contributer: Al Williams, Director of Conference Operations

Many of you know that I've been serving the past four years on the SHARE board as the Director of Conference Operations. Since 1955, the only product that SHARE offered has been in-person conferences. There have been changes, but the deep technical content and expertise is still there in System z, and we've added focus on Application Architecture and Integration; Enterprise Data Center; and Information Management.

My assignment changed this past six months. I also picked up responsibility for a SHARE eLearning initiative (yes, I know - I hate the name, too, but don't know a better one). With a lot of help, we are taking some risks and changing a whole lot of things. Last August at SHARE in Denver, we started recording sessions to make them available online. That has continued this week here at SHARE in Seattle, and is not new news.

This week we are sticking our neck out and going live with SHARE Online From Seattle. We are offering 24 webcasts live from the conference - a full week of one great session per hour from the conference. If you register for the online event and happen to miss one of the sessions, that should not be a problem. All of the online sessions are being recorded and will be available online for six months. I'm delighted that our keynote speakers are all participating. They are worth the price of admission in themselves:

  • Dan Tapscott - ""Grown Up Digital: The Net Generation and the Transformation of Talent, Marketing and Learning""
  • Tom Rosamilia - ""System z: Systems for a Smarter Planet""
  • Peter Coffee - ""Enterprise Cloud Computing: Immediate, Urgent, Inevitable""
  • Ray Bender - The Need for IT Leadership in Difficult Economic Times

Monday was great for me. The first offering started off really well. We had Don Tapscott as our kick off keynote yesterday morning. He was tremendous! His presentation ran over by 1/2 hour, but no one left. That was webcast and will be available later on the SHARE Web site.

Yesterday was day two of the SHARE conference in Seattle, and I'm delighted with our success in webcasting sessions from the conference. I sat through the first session of the day: ""Cloud Computing: Immediate, Urgent, Inevitable."" The speaker was Peter Coffee, the Director of Platform Research from SalesForce.com. He presented a very interesting view of cloud computing that argues that it is not about platform, but rather about delivering services from the cloud. He talked seriously about issues about managing intellectual property and managing security while gaining rapid development and deployment at much more cost effective levels. His information about security in cloud services is surprising and encouraging. It will all be a revelation to people who assume that clouds cannot be secure. We webcast this session, and the recording will be available on www.SHARE.org later next week.

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