Tuesday, October 25, 2011

IBM Sessions at Gartner Symposium ITxpo, Orlando, 2011

I attended several sessions presented by IBMers at the symposium. Here are some of the highlights and points that I took away from each one, summarizing my live posts from @mirv_pgh on Twitter.

Best Practices for Cloud & Database Security

On Tuesday, Al Cooley, IBM Director of Data Security, spoke on cloud and database security. Security is one of the big concerns that most customers raise about cloud computing.

Some highlights:
Intruders tend to go straight for the databases because that's usually where the goods are. Best practices:
  • discover, identify your sensitive data
  • assess vulnerabilities
  • harden security
  • perform auditing
  • monitor activities
  • monitor applications
  • implement access control
  • encrypt sensitive data
  • mask your test data

Transforming @ IBM: Innovation that Matters

On Tuesday, Leslie Gordon, IBM VP of Application & Infrastructure Service Management, spoke on IBM's own transformational journey as a global IT enterprise. It was interesting for me, as an IBMer to hear about how IBM implemented these changes across the organization.

Some highlights:

  • The foundation: a globally integrated enterprise, mandate for growth and making things smarter.
  • What is an essential CIO? 2011 CIO study – The Essential CIO – download your copy here.
  • Cloud computing is in the top four of CIO priorities.
  • There is a call to serve the enterprise. Remember, everything won't get done in a year.
  • Cloud computing is not rocket science but it is computer science.
  • IBM's internal cloud moved select resources to a more agile, cost-effective platform.
  • IBM put it's own analytics, collaboration, development and test, and more in the cloud.
  • Watson, named for one of IBM's founders, is now being used to help physicians make diagnoses. It saves time and saves lives.
  • Read more about how Wellpoint is putting Watson to work in the healthcare industry here.

Transforming your business with Cloud Computing

On Wednesday, Ric Telford, VP of Cloud Computing, spoke on how businesses can win with cloud computing.

Some highlights:

  • 30 percent of bugs are introduced by inconsistent configurations. PaaS addresses that by providing reliability, security, scalability.
  • 4-6 weeks is an average lead time for application deployment. PaaS can accelerate the development and delivery process, cutting weeks down to days.
  • IBM SmartCloud Enterprise is being used for development and test, batch processing, and web applications.
  • The new IBM SmartCloud Enterprise+ offering takes it a step further with better support for enterprise applications. You run on a dedicated cloud, built like any production environment.
  • IBM SmartCloud for SAP supports SAP applications. The SmartCloud portfolio is being expanded to support other capabilities, too.
  • SaaS: IBM offers e-commerce, smarter cities, social business, business analytics, and more on the cloud.
  • IBM Cast Iron Integration is a hybrid cloud solution, got mentioned a few times here.
  • We see enterprises start with a private cloud and move to a hybrid solution.
  • SMBs can start on a public cloud and use SaaS solutions to compete in the marketplace.
  • Where private clouds are going – moving to PaaS – integrated middleware, platform and image management.
  • Heterogenous hypervisors? Would make a good name for a fantasy sports team. #insidejoke

There were also some good talks given by Kevin Elder, IBM Business Partner, on Business Analytics, and Chris Pepin, IBM Mobile Technology Evangelist, on Social Business and Mobility Solutions. Brandi Boatner covered those talks and you can follow her tweets about them here - @ThinkBluePR.