Impressions from Gartner's AADI Summit

December 02, 2011 --

hotel-caesars-palace-na.jpgThis week was a busy one: 3 days in Vegas for the Gartner Application Architecture, Development & Integration (AADI) Summit, and the launch of Talend v5. I have already commented on the latter, but wanted to share a few thoughts and comments about the Summit.

The first fleeting thought is a bit of disappointment on the amount of online social interactions.  There were not nearly enough Tweeps at this event. Few analysts cared to tweet their thoughts – with the notable exception of @ted_friedman and @merv. And even vendors, who are usually all about trying to look good by tweeting bits and pieces, did not seem very engaged. I think that with the few tweets I posted, I got on the big screen too often (see below).

Now, not all good interactions are online, right? Otherwise, what would be the point of traveling to Vegas (apart from the gambling, I mean). And from that standpoint, the conference was great. We had many great discussions with a number of analysts who are covering our space - the broad integration market - and got excellent feedback from all of them on our new holistic integration positioning: bringing together data, application and process integration. I am very grateful to Jess Thompson, Yefim Natis, Anne-Thomas Manes, Massimo Pezzini, Ted Friedman, Benoit Lheureux, Jim Sinur, Dan Sholler, Merv Adrian and others for the time they spent with us and their feedback. That’s a lot of people we met but Talend’s scope is clearly expanding and spanning more and more markets.

The sessions were also great, at least the few I was able to attend between meetings, press briefings on v5, etc. Lots of discussions on XaaS: SaaS, IaaS, PaaS, iPaaS, aPaaS.  These three letters - aaS - are pretty hot (no pun intended... OK maybe a pun was intended... this was in Vegas after all). Cloud is not the hot topic it was, but that’s because Cloud is going mainstream and now the issues are much more refined that Cloud or No Cloud - it's what kind of Cloud, for which purpose, and how to integrate it with the rest of the information system (hybrid cloud integration).

For a conference targeted on integration, I think that the data/information content was under addressed. Of course, the finest data analysts were there (hmm, now I am going to hear from others who don’t like not being the finest), but there were too few sessions on information. We are still educating the applications crowd on the value or proper information management.

tweetscreen.jpgI am sure everyone will be shocked to hear that my best moment at the conference was when Jess Thompson mentioned, in a session he cohosted with Ted Friedman on the convergence of data integration and application integration, that “Talend has launched their new version this morning, that combines data integration and application integration in the same platform with a common repository.” (I think I even enjoyed this moment better than when I split aces and drew two face cards later that night).

As you would expect the “How to deal with your megavendor” session was also pretty interesting, with tales of clients being milked by their vendor, or else not getting the value they should, and looking for exit strategies. But I have blogged about this not too long ago.

In any case, this was a very interesting conference, full of positive interactions and great feedback. And no, not everything that happens in Vegas stays in Vegas - as proven by this post.


PS: in case anyone is wondering, Vegas was chilly and cloudy/rainy, and anyway there was no free time to enjoy the great pool at the Caesars Palace that is shown on the photo above. It's just marketing.