Monday, January 29, 2007

ITExpo Highlights - Thoughts, Photos and a Podcast

I've been ready to post some highlights of the ITExpo since Thursday, but I ran into a perfect storm of technology snafus, all at once, of course. On Tuesday, Marc Robins and I issued a press release about our alliance to better serve clients with our consulting services.

Two days before I had renewed my web domain, and somehow, someway that led to my email going into a black hole, and my website URL being redirected here to my blog. So, when this press release went out, I wasn't exactly easy to find - how convenient. Well, the email problem has finally been fixed, but not the website. Now that I'm back, that's pretty high on today's to-do list.

On top of this, my notebook all of a sudden went schizo, and was pretty much unusuable most of the time I was there. It seems to be running ok today, but I don't trust it, and went out and got a good backup device yesterday, so at least my data won't be lost if things get out of hand again. This really cut into my blogging plans, as I had downloaded most of the photos in this post before the PC problems kicked in. So, I just had to wait until getting back yesterday, and now I'm able to blog again.

Has this happened to you? I know I'm not alone in the PC glitch department. During one of my panels, the PC used for one of the presentations had a similar out-of-mind experience. Just as the presenter was pulling up his slides, the screen display all of a sudden went upside down, and everything was inverted. Truly bizarre. Despite all the geeks in the audience nobody had ever seen this one before, and we all agreed to move on. So, the presenter ditched to slides and did a great job speaking to the topic - the old fashioned way.

Enough about that. Overall, the conference was quite good, but similar to recent ITExpos I've attended, the focus is quite broad, and you really have to pick your spots. I was so intent on attending some IPTV and Web 2.0 sessions, but they took place when my problems were at their worst, and I just had to drop everything to fix them.

That said, the show caters very well to telecom buyers, which I think has always been its strength. Lots of content around VARs and channels, with plenty of opportunities to evaluate new products and listen to real-world experiences. Two tracks that were very well attended were SIP Trunking and VoIP Peering, both of which are definitely hot topics right now. So, Ingate Systems and Stealth Communications, respectively, were on the money by putting so much effort into getting these tracks together.

If there was a lament to note, it would be Andy Abramson not getting to the show. I was really looking forward to seeing him there, but he had his own set of problems travel-wise, and it just didn't work out.

For a more detailed account of the event, the TMC blogs are the place to go, especially Rich, Tom and Greg's postings.

Oh, and one more thing to add - a podcast! During the show, I did a pod with colleague Thomas Howe, who has recently started a podcast series of his own - highly recommended. While writing up this post, I see Thomas has just posted the pod, so you can listen to it any time now. It's short and sweet - about 6 minutes. Hope you like it!

With that said, here are some photos, courtesy of my NokiaN93 phone...


Meet "the family". Like father, like son. Rich Tehrani with Russell Shaw; Nadji Tehrani with Rick Bisesto of TMC.


Mike Tribolet of Vonage. Had trouble getting a clear shot of him - he was a real moving target up on stage. Sorry about that Mike - must be the "IPO diet" you referred to that's putting a real spring in your step. Looks good! :-) Oh, and hey, didn't I just see you the week before at PTC? You sure get around.


Chuck Rutledge and Joanne Lowy at the Quintum booth; Mosh Maeir of Flat Planet


Neal Shact with his hands full - Blair Pleasant and Barbara Gerdes - lucky guy. Didn't they make a movie about you a while back? Isaac Hayes did the soundtrack - "he's a complicated man, but no one understands him but his woman...". Or am I confusing you with Shaq?


Well, this is one way to get attention. DICE is an Iowa-based job sourcing agency for IT jobs. Yup, he's walking around with a monitor strapped to his back. Is that how they track down IT jobs in Iowa? Sure reminded me a lot of Al Franken, right? The "mobile uplink guy" from Weekend Update on SNL. If you remember - just too funny....


Oh, and just in case things got dull at the Expo, you could always go next door to the Tatoo Expo. Only in America. "Dude, where's the SIP Trunking session? And how can I get a tat of the TMC logo? I've got some room over my right eyebrow. It'll look really cool right next to my Microsoft logo."


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