Cisco Live! Any Way You Want It

I have a feeling that this year’s Cisco Live! event, hosted at Orlando’s Orange County Convention Center next week, is going to be the best one ever. With top-drawer attractions like Journey, Richard Branson, and their own Padmasree Warrior, Cisco has certainly put forth the effort to ensure it will be a conference to remember.

Even when Cisco Live! was known as Networkers, it was a big deal around the Global Knowledge offices. Our Cisco instructors and product managers are looking forward to learning more about the challenges customers are facing and solutions Cisco offers to address them, as well as learning more about the future of borderless networks, certifications, collaboration, and virtualization.

This will be my third consecutive Cisco Live!, and for an IT conference, it’s packed full of activities. When cloud computing was first emerging a few years back, it was a popular topic at Cisco Live! Same thing happened last year when big data was all the rage.

I think I got a sneak peek of this year’s hot topic when I heard Chris Young, Senior Vice President of Cisco System’s Security and Government Group, speak at the RSA Conference back in February. According to Young, software-defined networks or SDNs are the “game changer” for the next generation of data centers. I’ll let you know how much I hear about SDNs in my post-Cisco Live! post.

Here’s the sessions we’re excited about attending:

Service Provider
Those interested in service provider solutions will want to attend Sunday’s Service Provider Keynote hosted by Cisco’s Senior Vice President of Americas Service Providers Michael Glickman and CTO and Chief Architect of Engineering David Ward. You’ll learn how Cisco wants to help service providers transform their infrastructures and business models using intelligence and innovative solutions.

Empowered Women’s Network
Also on Sunday, the ladies of Cisco kick off their Empowered Women’s Network event featuring appearances by CTO Padmasree Warrior, Americas Field Marketing VP Patrice D’Eramo-Flack, Communication and Collaboration IT SVP Sheila Jordan, and Global Cloud Business VP Manjula Talreja. Our female blogger will have to fill you in on this event next month.

Data Center
For you data center enthusiasts, don’t miss Monday afternoon’s keynote address by David Yen, SVP of Cisco’s Data Center Group, to learn how a converged approach with unified computing, unified management, and unified fabric will be needed for an open, secure, and scalable platform in a multi-cloud environment for your future cloud deployments.

This year’s event culminates with a performance by 80s pop/rock legends Journey at Orlando’s Universal theme park during the Customer Appreciation Party. It’ll be tough to beat last year’s event that featured geek-friendly Weezer rocking a Petco Park stadium full of Cisco geeks in San Diego, but I’m sure a mid-summer’s night in Orlando’s Universal will provide many surprises as well. Maybe this year’s Cisco hat will have a fan on it or a mist tube for the deep southern humidity we will likely suffer through that night.

For Thursday’s Celebrity Closing Keynote, Cisco went all out to land Sir Richard Branson, legendary founder of the Virgin Companies. While he’s no William Shatner or Mythbusters, I’m sure Branson will provide an insightful, if not entertaining, end to the week.

Stop by and say hello
Be sure to stop by and say hello to our Global Knowledge product managers, subject matter experts, and instructors at Booth #653 in the World of Solutions exhibit area. We’ll also be outside the Cisco certification testing center. Make sure you pick up one of our “Level Up” t-shirts, custom-designed by renowned artist Tom Whalen.

Also, follow us on @GKonCisco for updates and photos throughout the conference.

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