This is the first time I will be attending VMworld as an exhibitor so I thought I would make my best attempt at blogging about the experience. My past includes many large conference attendances but all from the attendee/consultant’s perspective. It’s great to see these shows and absorb as much knowledge as possible in a short period of time. This week will be different as I attempt to listen closely to customers, curious attendees, industry colleagues, and others in order to gain insight into what people feel is the direction of User Virtualization – and virtualization in general. My hope is to reveal the other side of the show as I experience it this week.
To start let me tell you how exciting it was to walk into the exhibitor hall on Friday in the AM (first move-in day) and to get a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to setup an event like this. Lifts, moving crews, servers, loud machinery and then… silence. It was break time around 10:15am and literally the Freeman (union workers providing labor) halted everything they were doing and vacated the massive exhibitor hall. That brings up another point. I needed to carry in some gear for our demos and was directed to the office of the Freeman when I asked if there was a cart that I could borrow. They told me that if I could carry the gear in unassisted – no cart or helpers – then I was free to do so. However, if a cart was necessary I would be required to “hire” the Freeman. Now I can understand there may be liability issues if they were to turn over the keys to one of their fork lifts and drove over another company’s exhibit equipment but come on, I have to pay for labor just to carry in some basic equipment?!
As it turned out I was able to lug in everything with the assistance of my girlfriend Meredith – she was free except for the dinner later that night. Check out a couple quick shots I took of the beginning phase of the exhibitor hall setup.
I’m looking forward to a fantastic week in San Francisco with other geeks who are as ecstatic about virtualization as I am. Swing by Tranxition’s booth in the New Innovator area and say hello.