What You Should Know Before You Go to Cisco Live 2016

CiscoLiveBlogBIt’s that time of year again: Cisco Live. Whether you’re a NetVet or you’re a first-timer, there’s lots to see and do and it can be an overwhelming experience.

During this year’s event, held in Las Vegas from July 10-14, expect Cisco to unveil their predictions for the coming year on what is going to be important in information and communication technology (ICT). Based on the current landscape, I predict we’ll see big announcements in the areas of:

  • Digitization
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Cloud
  • Big data and analytics

As a four-time Cisco Live veteran, I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks for attending the event. This is how I get the most out of my experience:

Sessions of interest

I like to start by checking out the session catalog. There are over 1,000 sessions, so you should to do your homework before you go in order to maximize your time.

Sessions are available for a number of technology areas and within those areas there is a range of experience levels from introductory to advanced – make sure you pick the right session offerings for your interest and expertise.

As a technical advisor, I like to stay up to date with technology and trends. This year I will be attending the Cisco Technical Leadership Council on Monday and Tuesday and then will be attending technical sessions on Wednesday and Thursday. My tech sessions of choice are related to cybersecurity, ACI-Application Centric Infrastructure, Cisco Network Function Virtualization Infrastructure (NFVI), Cisco Digital Network Architecture (DNA) and Cisco’s Virtual Internet Routing Lab (VIRL).

Technical sessions aren’t the only things to do at Cisco Live. You can practice skills, flex your networking muscles, socialize or give back to a nonprofit. Head over to The Hub and the DevNet Zone. This is where you come to learn, code and get hands-on experience with Cisco products and open source SDK’s and APIs. Have a look at VIRL, Cisco’s Virtual Internet Routing Lab.

Don’t forget to go see the band Maroon 5 at the customer appreciation event on Wednesday night.

Make a social impact and assemble meal kits with Stop Hunger Now or build hygiene kits with Clean the World. These are fantastic initiatives – some of my best memories are made here. A list of activities can be viewed at http://www.ciscolive.com/us/activities/.

Packing your suitcase

There are a few items you should make sure to bring with you to Cisco Live that will make your experience a lot easier or more comfortable.

  • It’s going to be cold inside the conference center so pack a sweater. That’s right, the inside the air conditioning in some locations will be chilly.
  • With temperatures outside expected to be over 105 degrees you will need light comfortable clothes when you are traveling between buildings on the Las Vegas Strip.
  • There will be lots of walking, bring the most comfortable shoes you have. If you have a Fitbit bring it along too, you may be surprised by how many miles you walk in a day at Cisco Live.
  • I recommend bringing a thermal mug like a Contigo. Fill it up with coffee, tea or a cool drink between sessions.
  • I also recommend leaving one-third to half of your suitcase space empty. You will acquire lots of swag when visiting the World of Solutions vendor booths.
  • Don’t forget all your recharging cables and a portable USB battery pack. If you do forget one, pick up one from Global Knowledge at booth #837.

Follow me @GK_bradhaynes and compare sessions, tips and other information. I hope my tips help you to enjoy and get the most out of your time at Cisco Live.

Can’t make it this year? Cisco Live webcasts and broadcasts are free to attend: https://www.ciscolive.com/online/connect/agenda.ww

Stay connected and follow the Social Media Central and Contests Social at: http://www.ciscolive.com/us/activities/social-media-hub-contests/


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