Five reasons why I’m looking forward to VMworld 2020 Digital Edition
I’m not going to do a big introduction and talk about the pandemic to explain why VMworld 2020 will be a digital online event. If you’re reading this blogpost, I’m guessing you already know: September 29th – October 1st 2020 will go in the books as the first-ever VMworld Digital Edition.
Conferences have always been a big part of our industry and VMworld is my top favourite event. And while it is really sad we can’t physically attend, there are definitely huge benefits to VMworld being an online digital event. There is a lot of debate going on in the community about virtual events and while there are definite drawbacks, there are also big benefits to attending a digital event. In this blogpost I will give you 5 reasons why VMworld 2020 Digital Edition will be awesome:
#1 VMworld 2020 is free
That’s right. Everyone can attend VMworld 2020 free of charge! A normal VMworld ticket can be quite expensive for many people. In many companies people need to move mountains and persuade managers and company leadership to attend a physical tech conference. Conference tickets easily cost $1500 or more. If you ever wanted to attend VMworld, this is your chance!
The free pass allows access to all the breakout sessions (businesss-level overviews and technical deep-dives). At just $299 a premier pass is available which allows access to additional types of sessions, such as roundtable discussions, birds-of-a-feather sessions and so on. While these are great opportunities to directly engage VMware experts, the free pass provides a ton of value if you want to learn about all the latest and greatest VMware technologies such as VMware Tanzu, NSX, VMware Cloud and so on.
#2 Travel is not required
For me, this is a big, big plus. Although I enjoy staying in cities like Barcelona or Las Vegas and hang out with friends at VMworld, generally speaking I don’t like to travel all that much. I also don’t like staying away from my wife and kids for an entire week or more. With most conferences I attend normally being hosted in the second half of the year, I’m often away from home longer than I would like to. Being able to join all the VMworld activities from the comfort of my home office is super.
#3 Much easier to attend sessions
Normally, my VMworld schedule is crazy with most of my time consumed by meetings and activities around VMworld. I do miss attending breakout sessions throughout the week. Yes, I know sessions are recorded but to be honest, I never really commit myself to watching some of the recordings when they are released after VMworld. I’m really looking forward to attend the breakout sessions this year. So many exciting things are happening in the VMware portfolio (Tanzu, Carbon Black, NSX, VCF, VMware Cloud, etc. etc.) and being able to hop on any of the breakout sessions to get the latest news is really cool. Since we don’t have to walk 15 to 20 minutes to attend a specific session, jumping in on any topic you like is easier than ever.
#4 Engagement is (can be) higher
This is a tricky one. I’ve seen people debating on Twitter about feeling less engaged when attending a virtual event. Normal work goes on, and mails and call keep coming in. If you are able to approach a virtual event just like a live event, you can definitely increase your focus and engagement. You’re attending a conference, so why not turn on your “Out of office” and “Do not disturb”? Does attending from home vs. being physically at the event really determine how you dedicate your time?
I think engaging the speakers and the rest of the community is also easier with online events. Have you every stood in line after a presentation, uncomfortably waiting for the speaker to answer your question? Platforms like Twitter are really, really powerful. Using the correct Twitter handle and/or hashtag allows you to ask your question to an entire community. Really powerful!
#5 Diversity rules
I think VMworld 2020 is a great opportunity to introduce some diversity to VMworld. I’m not saying VMworld is doing bad in the diversity space, but just imagine how many people are typically unable to join the event in Barcelona or Las Vegas. Obviously, most people normally attending VMworld are people how deal with VMware technology and most of them go back to the Virtual Infrastructure days of VMware. But, VMware is no longer an infrastructure company. Today, VMware technology delivers value to almost every role in IT, not just the infrastructure admins. Developers around the globe can now join VMworld and learn how VMware Tanzu can help them drive velocity and productivity. Security officers can learn everything about intrinsic security with Carbon Black Cloud and network admins can learn how NSX can revolutionize their networks. The limitless reach of an online event can open up so many great opportunities for people not normally dealing with VMware technology. They can now all drop in join any session they like.
As you can tell, I’m really looking forward to VMworld 2020 Digital Edition! Be sure to register today at https://www.vmworld.com/en/index.html