Mobility, cloud computing, security issues to dominate Interop

One of the premier technology shows of the year once again hits Las Vegas from May 6-10 and many of the themes IT leaders grapple with on a daily basis will be the hot topics at this year's forums and panel discussions. The show focuses on nine subject areas this year including: cloud computing, networking, wireless and mobility, virtualization, data center, storage, collaboration, information security and risk management, and IT management. Mobility is a dominant discussion point at this year's show though with 14 sessions on the topic.

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Organizers of the show are expecting similar numbers to last year's 13,000 attendees and 350 exhibitors at Interop this year says Interop General Manager Jennifer Jessup. Jessup, who is managing the show for the first time this year, says her goal is to connect attendees with some of the leading thinkers in technology today and provide a forum for IT professionals to engage with other users about ongoing issues in the tech world.

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While last year many of the keynote speakers discussed cloud computing, Jessup says this year's keynote speakers come from a more diversified background. For example, the Tuesday morning kickoff keynotes will be from Padmasree Warrior, CTO of Cisco and Marc Randall, senior vice president and general manager of networking for Avaya. Cloud enthusiasts need not worry though, there will be plenty of cloud discussions as well including a two-day Enterprise Cloud Summit on Sunday and Monday, and a keynote panel discussion featuring some of the leading players in the cloud market on Wednesday morning. This year's keynotes will also feature customer user stories, giving attendees real world insight into how technologies, such as the cloud, are being implemented at companies of various sizes. HP customer DreamWorks, for example, is set to present on Wednesday morning.

The show will also feature a handful of new aspects this year, including an IT Channel summit, which is a set of programming specifically for OEMs, resellers and service industries on. This year's exhibitor floor will also feature the Community Hub, a new place for attendees to meet and greet with conference speakers and meet with other attendees.

There's a lot going on at Interop this year, so if you need any help deciding what to do among the dozens of speeches, conferences, panel discussions and keynotes, you've come to the right place. Network World's guide to Interop will let you know the picks of the day, and other recommended sessions to attend. See you there!

Sunday, May 6 and Monday, May 7

Enterprise Cloud Summit, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday and Monday

Public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud, Infrastructure as a Service and Platform as a Service are all various strategies for executing a cloud deployment. But which is right for your enterprise? As part of this two-day summit, IT leaders will learn about new strategies for implementing and managing all different types of clouds. The first day will focus on cloud platforms, specifically IaaS and PaaS, while day two will be spent discussing private clouds and Big Data, including exploring tools such as Hadoop, Cassandra and Mongo.

Enterprise Cloud Summit chairman: Alistair Croll, founder and principal analyst, BitCurrent

Private Clouds Instructor: Barb Goldworm, president and chief analyst, FOCUS

Big Data Instructor: Jeremy Edberg, Lead Cloud Reliability Engineer, Netflix

Sunday, May 6 and Monday, May 7

Principles of Effective IT Management, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Sunday and Monday

Effective IT management means taking an IT idea for managing or fixing a problem and seeing it through to execution. In this two-day collaborative session, IT directors and managers will learn how to improve efficiency in the IT department, identify policy areas to focus on, and learn how to manage relationships with employees, managers and end users.

Principles of Effective IT Management Instructor: Thomas Randall, operations vice president, BT Americas

Tuesday, May 8


8 a.m. Tuesday morning keynotes featuring Padmasree Warrior

The general sessions of Interop kick off Tuesday morning with a power-packed trio of keynote speakers, headlined by Padmasree Warrior, CTO of Cisco, who will discuss how IT executives are dealing with three major macro industry trends - mobility, cloud and video - along with the top 3 business mega trends - business volatility, personalization, global transformation. Also on Tuesday morning, high-ranking officials from Zynga and Avaya will share their thoughts on the state of the technology industry.

Keynote speakers: Padmasree Warrior, CTO of Cisco; Allan Leinwand, CTO for Infrastructure, Zynga; Marc Randall, Senior vice president and general manager of Networking, Avaya.

10:15 a.m. Data Centers: The next 12-18 months

With all the talk of virtualization, cloud computing, BYOD and security, enterprise executives still have to worry about their core infrastructure. Learn from a panel of experts about how the data center can and will change in the next year and a half.

Panelists: Mike Fratto, editor, Network Computing; Dave Peters, manager of system integration at Environmental Systems Research Institute; Kurt Marcko, IT journalist, Network Computing; John Burke, principal research analyst, Nemertes Research.

11:30 a.m. Securing social media in the enterprise

What social media policy is appropriate for your business? Should access to social media be restricted? How can an enterprise be protected from threats posed by social media, such as malware, or social media attacks? These questions and more are the topics of this discussion.

Speaker: Nicholas Arvantis, security consulting services, Dimension Data.

12:15 p.m. Open Source and the enterprise, presented by Rackspace

There's been a lot of talk about open source vs. proprietary offerings recently, especially in the cloud space. How do enterprises know which way to go? In this panel discussion, hear from some of the leading backers of the OpenStack cloud movement.

Speaker: Soo Choi, director of operations, RackSpace Cloud Builders

1 p.m. Afternoon keynotes

Hear from top officials at Google and Dell about technology trends impacting enterprises today.

Keynote speakers: Dario Zamarian, vice president and general manager of Networking, Dell; Jonathan Rochelle, vice president, Google Enterprise; Bill Chang, executive vice president of business group, Singapore Telecommunications Limited.

2:30 p.m. Modern two-factor authentication: Defending against today's user-targeted attacks

The bad guys are constantly coming up with new ways to penetrate IT infrastructures, so how are enterprises supposed to keep up to date with the latest in security features? One answer could be two-factor authentication, but even that comes with its costs and concerns. This panel will discuss the evolution of two-factor authentication and provide insight on the latest security measures today.

Speaker: Dug Song, CEO, Duo Security

3:45 p.m. Completing the mobile vision: Mobile unified communications

Mobile is the wave of the future, but creating a unified communications platform is easier said than done. In this session, learn how unifying landlines, cellular, Wi-Fi, voicemail into a single managed services can help control costs and create a competitive advantage.

Panelists: Zeus Kerravala, ZK Research; John Roese, Huawei Technologies; David Ginsburg, Extreme Networks; Michael Smith, Cisco.

8 p.m. After hours TweetUp

Still haven't had enough after the first full day of general conferences? Monitor Twitter throughout the day for the "#Interop" hashtag, which will announce where the afterhours TweetUp will be taking place.

Wednesday, May 9

8:30 a.m. Wednesday morning keynote

Join a jam-packed 90-minute morning keynote, which will include insights from VMware CTO and senior vice president of R&D Steve Herrod, as well as a panel discussion featuring some of the top cloud vendors, including Rackspace and Terremark. Plus, hear from a case study by DreamWorks Animation of how the firm has leveraged the HP cloud.

Keynote speakers: Steve Herrod, CTO and senior vice president of R&D, VMware; Derek Chan, head of global technology operations, DreamWorks animation; Bethany Mayer, senior vice president and general manager of HP Networking. Keynote Panelists: Alistair Croll, founder, Bitcurrent; Steven Shalita, vice president of Marketing, NetScout Systems; John Engates, CTO of Rackspace; Ellen Rubin, vice president of cloud products, Terremark.

10:15 a.m. Enabling endpoints for collaboration: Hardphones, softphones, mobiles

Who should get what device? What should your BYOD strategy be, and how will you support it? Enterprises will feature a mix of communications devices into the future and this session will offer insights on how to manage it all.

Panelists: Robin Gareiss, executive vice president and founder, Nemertes Research; Pejman Roshan, vice president of Mobility, ShoreTel; Jack Jachner, vice president of Business development OpenTouch, Alcatel-Lucent.

11:30 a.m. The future of the desktop or the desktop of the future

With the proliferation of mobile computing, users want access to their desktops even when they're not at their desk. This panel will discuss what the future holds for the desktop and how technologies such as thin or zero clients, hypervisors, virtual desktops and cloud services can be implemented, plus what infrastructure is needed to support them.

Panelists: Barb Goldworm, president and chief analyst, FOCUS; Glenn Wilson, product management, Google; John Burke, principal research analyst, Nemertes Research; Phil Montgomery, senior director of desktop product management, VMware.

2 p.m. Do you know your enemy? Incorporating security intelligence and adversary centric analysis into information risk management

One important aspect of developing a security strategy is knowing who is attacking you and what they're capable of. This session will run through the skill sets of various attacking methods and tools to help prevent them.

Speaker: Josh Corman, Director of threat intelligence, Akamai


2p.m. OpenFlow and Software Defined Networkss: What are they and why do you care?

OpenFlow and SDNs are a new approach to network design, but is it right for your enterprise? Learn about what OpenFlow and SDNs are and what problems they solve.

Panelists: Jim Metzler, vice president, Ashton Metzler & Associates; Rakesh Saha, director of product management, IBM; Matthew Davy, chief network architect, InCNTRE; Isabelle Guis, vice president of marketing, Big Switch Networks.

3:15 p.m. Big data? No, big decisions are what you want

Big data is one thing, getting actionable information from that data is another. This session will run through what big data is, how it should be archived for retrieval and how it can be used to drive important decisions.

Speaker: Stuart Miniman, senior analyst, wikibon

Thursday, May 10

9 a.m. Integrating social software into contact centers and elsewhere in enterprise communities

Social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter can create valuable direct connections between customers and the contact center. In this session, a panel of experts will discuss how this can be done effectively and be integrated into current operations.

Panelists: Sheila McGee-Smith, president, McGee-Smith Analytics; Michael Smith, director of market management collaboration applications, Cisco; Laura Bassett, director of marketing, emerging products and technology, Avaya; Lisa Abbott, senior product marketing manager for social media and eServices, Genesys.

10:15 a.m. Security automation: Connecting your silos

Security strategies for some enterprises in the past have involved multiple unique technologies protecting various aspects of the network. But, standards-based signaling can instead create an automated, intelligent network security infrastructure that incorporates components of previous systems. Learn how it works in this session.

Speaker: Lisa Lorenzin, principal solution architect, security and mobility, Juniper Networks.

11:30 a.m. Do mobile operating systems still matter?

This session will examine the real differences between the various mobile operating systems and what impact they have on enterprise IT.

Panelists: Michael Brandenburg, industry analyst, Frost &Sullivan Andrew Braunberg, research director, Current Analysis; Christian Kane, analyst, Forrester Research; Adam Blum, CEO, Rhomobile.

Copyright © 2012 IDG Communications, Inc.

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