Sharpen Your IT Optimization Skills at Edge2013

The premier Storage and Optimized IT Solutions event of the year

Tivoli Beat. A weekly IBM service management perspective.

If you're interested in the cutting edge of IT and business trends, why not attend an event specifically designed to explore them?

IBM Edge2013 , to take place at the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas from June 10-14, will feature:

While the historical focus of Edge has been storage, in 2013 that focus has been expanded. It now also addresses IT optimization in a larger sense, the direct relationship between IT performance and business success, and the new opportunities to improve in both of those areas.

As in prior years, the 2013 event will actually involve three different sub-events:

1) Executive Edge.  This two-and-a-half day event for IT executives and leaders will focus on discovering new innovations for managing storage growth, accelerating cloud deployments, unlocking the insights from big data, and securing critical information and processes, featuring over 30 case studies delivered by client executives.

Looking for an example? Storage is a critical resource for every business—and first-rate storage management can help protect every business’s most precious asset: its data.

At Executive Edge, IT executives and leaders can attend an event called “Protect Your Business from Harm.” This will spotlight how Tivoli offerings help reduce management complexity, optimize storage-related processes, and improve business resilience as a result—a package of strengths offered by few solution providers besides IBM.

2) Winning Edge. This three-day Storage and Optimized IT Solutions sales training boot camp is available exclusively to IBM System Storage and System x Specialty and Specialty Elite Business Partner sales professionals. Winning Edge provides a unique opportunity to receive in-depth sales education from recognized subject matter experts—giving sellers the strategies and tactics needed to identify unique opportunities, compete for contracts, and win, all backed up with real-world case studies.

3) Technical Edge (IT solutions and management capabilities). Of the 350+ Technical Edge sessions, dozens will specifically explore Tivoli solutions and how they can play a key role in three areas of emerging importance: cloud computing, big data and smart analytics, and the business results that can emerge from IT optimization.

Readers of Tivoli Beat, which addresses IBM's service management portfolio, will no doubt be particularly interested in Technical Edge.

Sixteen Technical Edge tracks spotlight many compelling new technologies and business processes

Cloud computing

No IT topic is hotter than cloud. Increasingly, clouds are seen as ideal platforms of IT service delivery—for both internal and external services—because of their policy-driven automation, and the way that translates into higher business agility and lower operating costs.

"While the historical focus of Edge has been storage, in 2013 that focus has been expanded. It now also addresses IT optimization in a larger sense, the direct relationship between IT performance and business success, and the new opportunities to improve in both of those areas."

If you're on board with cloud as a concept, though, the question is still: What's the best way to implement and manage cloud over time?

Answers to that question come via several different tracks at Edge2013. The Cloud track, for instance, puts the focus squarely on the economics of IT and how, via cloud, it can be improved such that IT operations budgets can be stretched further without threatening critical service levels or the customer/end user experience.

Additional insight comes from the Storage Virtualization track; while many think of clouds primarily in terms of virtual servers, clouds actually virtualize storage and network resources as well, allocating those resources on a real-time basis from a shared pool and then returning the resources to the pool when they're no longer needed.

In particular, smart storage capabilities (such as those provided by solutions like IBM Tivoli Storage Manager ) can help you get more cloud value from the storage you already have, instead of simply buying more storage. This happens via capabilities like automatic tiering, which places data on the most appropriate storage tier for it, as determined by its business priority and frequency of use.

And if you're looking for an ideal cloud infrastructure, including hardware, software, and management, you might want to consider the new IBM PureSystems offerings, discussed in the track of the same name. These are complete cloud solutions featuring the best of IBM's cross-brand capabilities; they include expert patterns of middleware integration, helping organizations get an incredibly fast, yet fully optimized deployment of complex services involving such different domains as databases, business transactions, and external service presentation via the Web. Another strength: IBM PureSystems include a smart management layer that can be configured to match any manager's level of technical understanding.

IBM PureSystems are also an outstanding match for IBM SmartCloud service management capabilities. These are available in a rapidly growing portfolio that already addresses such critical cloud tasks as server provisioning, cloud asset monitoring, service desks, application performance management, change and configuration, and many others. SmartCloud capabilities can be mixed and matched to support almost any organization's needs and business context.

Big data/smart analytics

It's a common observation that data volumes are rising at most organizations—in some cases, so quickly as to be described as a “data tsunami,” a characterization that portrays data itself as a problem to be solved.

But what if, instead, data was a resource to be tapped?

Through big data analytics capabilities, these mass data volumes can become opportunities to gain new insight. Solutions of this class sift through data looking for hidden trends or patterns; once discovered, these can translate into innovative new strategies to be pursued en route to a better business outcome.

In the Big Data and Analytics track, you'll hear all about the many ways that this idea is being explored by organizations today—and everything IBM offers to help you do the same.

For instance, you can analyze both traditional data, as previously collected in information repositories such as data warehouses, as well as streaming data, that is continually made available to the organization (such as via social media data pertaining to customer use/reactions). Unstructured data not in databases, in general, is a vast untapped opportunity for new insights, since at most organizations it comprises the majority of all data.

One particularly compelling way to apply big data/analytics capabilities lies in linking them to storage—and IBM's Smarter Storage and IBM Tivoli storage management solutions are directly on point in this area, to be discussed in the Performance Optimization track.

For instance: suppose you want to know which IT services are anticipated to need more storage in the near term—and which demand the fastest forms of storage, to meet unusually high user expectations regarding service performance?

Flash storage, which has incredibly low read/write times and incredibly high reliability, is helpful... but also relatively expensive. Fortunately, with the help of IBM Tivoli capabilities, you can figure out how to make the best possible use of flash as a technology, maximizing your return on flash investment and minimizing any possible waste.

Business results

Of course, the ultimate goal of all IT optimization is to make IT a better instrument of business strategies—one that is faster, more available, more flexible, and more scalable... yet also less costly and complex to manage over time.

That's why business results are a third major focus of the Edge2013 event. And in the 16 Technical Edge tracks, you'll find many that deliver just that.

For example, the Efficiency track is all about how organizations can make more efficient use of storage than ever before via such technologies as real-time compression, thin provisioning, and flash-copying—thus reducing total operating costs significantly. The Networking track discusses how smart management of network resources such as bandwidth can play a key part in cost-effectively improving overall service performance. And the Security and Compliance track will show you how to lock down services to only the right people, in the right ways—thus avoiding potentially disastrous breaches and the PR damage and fees that can follow.

Register to attend the show today! Until April 28, a 10% Early Bird discount is available.

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