Let’s Go To InteropITX 2017

Last week I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to attend a few days of Interop, now InteropITX. This is a conference that I have been eagerly wanting to attend for the last couple of years but have not been able to make it out. This year would be different. I had a fair amount of friends who would either be speaking or be manning a booth on the show floor. So, I decided to grab a flight and a Business Hall Pass and bum a hotel room (Thanks, Peter

I am a firm believer that what you get out of a Conference is what you put into it. InteropITX is no different. Though I was only there on a Business Hall Pass, I believe I was able to use this pass to its fullest. I was able to attend a session or two(shh…), have great conversations with some Vendors I knew and some that were new, and most importantly I was able to catch up with friends and even make new ones. I also had the privilege of being a Tech Field Day Extra at InteropITX delegate (blog post coming soon). 

The Sessions

Being on a Business Hall Pass, I was limited in the sessions that I could attend. I was able to sit in on Rowell Dionicio’s session “Building WLANs for High Density and Capacity” and Jennifer Huber’s session “Wireless Security Gotchas to Avoid.” Both were fantastic and sparked many excellent questions from the attendees. (To me, questions are a sign of a great presentation.) Looking at the schedule, there were a lot of interesting sessions that I would have liked to have attended. Maybe next year.

The Business Hall

The convention floor, though smaller than I expected and missing a few major companies I thought might be there, was still packed with great exhibitors. The layout was nice and, for once, I didn’t feel like a sardine stuck in a tin. Some of the standout exhibitors for me were: The NBASE-T Alliance, NetBeez, Paessler, Spirent, and WatchGuard. Thanks to everyone for the great demos and conversations. I am excited to look further into many of these companies.

The People

Networking with people is why I come to conferences! Yes, I love learning, seeing, and playing with new tech, but it is truly about the people for me. The one-on-one conversations inspire me and can spark new ideas. Interop was teeming with people excited to not only share ideas but listen and learn from others as well. A special thank you to Rowell Dionicio, Jennifer Huber, Shaun Bender, Peter Jones, Drew Lentz, Tom Hollingsworth and the whole Tech Field Day crew for making InteropITX even better. 

Some of My Favorite Photos

Photo Credit: Rowell Dionicio, Drew Lentz, Shaun Bender, and Myself

My Thoughts

I have mixed feeling about InteropITX. I really love the all-technologies-welcome, vendor-neutral approach. That said, the conference felt small, smaller than I expected. I would have liked to have seen some of the bigger players in the technology industry show up. I also thought that there was a definite lack of content when it came to Wireless/Mobility. For a week-long conference to only have 4 sessions is a bit underwhelming. That said, I learned a lot, met some great people, had a lot of fun, and definitely look forward to what next year brings. 

Where you at the InteropITX? I would love to hear your thoughts on how you think the conference went.

As always, thank you for reading. 


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Robert Boardman

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